Here’s an early look at tomorrow’s important return to league play, visiting San Jose.
SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC (6-8-4; 22 pts.)
AT SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES (6-4-5; 23 pts.)
7 p.m. Saturday, Buck Shaw Stadium, Santa Clara, Calif.
TV: Channel 5.
RADIO: 97.3 FM (1210 AM in Spanish).
HEAD TO HEAD: The series is even, 2-2. However, the Earthquakes have won the last two meetings by a combined 5-0. They took the only previous meeting on their home pitch, 4-0, last season; and won this season’s May 22 meeting at Qwest Field, 1-0, on a Chris Wondolowski goal.
TEAM LEADERS: For Seattle – G 7, Steve Zakuani; A 8, Fredy Montero; S 53, Montero; SOG 19, Montero; GAA 1.37, Keller. For San Jose: G 6, Wondolowski; A 8, Bobby Convey; S 27, Wondolowski; SOG 15, Ryan Johnson; GAA , Jon Busch, 1.
SIGI SCHMID SCOUTING REPORT: “I thought we were a little unlucky when we played them at home. I thought we created a lot of chances and didn’t score in that particular game. We have got to make sure we finish our chances — that’s obviously important. They are a team right now that has a good belief in themselves. They have found a unit that is working — a little bit like we have found, as well.”
NOTES: A win would send Seattle past San Jose in the MLS standings. A win or draw by the Earthquakes would keep them ahead. A win or draw also would allow San Jose to retain the Heritage Cup, awarded annually to the winner of competitions between MLS clubs that retain their historic North American Soccer League nicknames. For now, that’s just the Earthquakes and Sounders. Next season, the Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps will be included. … San Jose is unbeaten in its last four home games. … Seattle leads MLS in corner kicks (107) and fouls suffered (223), is second in assists (27), third in offsides (61) and fouls committed (199), and fourth in shots (204). … Earthquakes midfielder Bobby Convey has scored or assisted in each of the past two games. He is second in MLS in assists. Wondolowski is second in the league with three game-winning goals. Defender Jason Hernandez has played the full 90 minutes in all 15 matches for a team-high 1,350 minutes played. Busch replaced Joe Cannon as goalkeeper on June 25 and has started the past four matches. … If Tyrone Marshall receives a yellow card he must sit out the next league game. … The referee is Edvin Jurisevic.
NEXT: Settle will fly directly from California to El Salvador, where they will conclude their CONCACAF Champions League preliminary series Tuesday vs. Metapan. The Sounders return to MLS play Aug. 8 vs. Houston at Qwest Field.