It’s gone final: a 1-0 Sounders win despite playing a man down most of the way. Eddie Johnson with the game winner.
Sounders move into tie for second in the West, with three straight home games coming up.
I’ll be back with quotes. Meanwhile, here are some notes from the club:
*Sounders FC is 5-1-1 over the past seven games and are second in the Western Conference with 1.67 points per match.
*Eddie Johnson’s seven goals are tied with Obafemi Martins for the team-lead. He has now scored in consecutive games and recorded a point in each of his last four starts. With 62 career MLS goals, he is now in sole possession of 22nd place on the all-time list.
*Mauro Rosales leads the team with seven assists, including five game-winners. His 33 career assists are second in club history, one shy of Fredy Montero’s record of 34. Rosales has one goal and four assists in his last six games, and Seattle is 24-2-7 when Rosales scores (11) or assists (33).
*Tonight marked the second straight game Seattle has scored via the Rosales-Johnson connection. The pair have linked up three times this year and nine times total.
*Sounders FC is 3-6-6 when playing down a man and 5-8-9 overall in any games they receive a red card.
*Johnson’s goal marked the fifth time Seattle has scored when down a man, going 2-2-1 in those games. Johnson scored last season at Montreal (6/16) while Seattle was a man down.
*With the start tonight, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado moved into fourth place in club history with 94 starts, passing Kasey Keller. Hurtado is also fourth with 98 starts and 8,357 minutes.
*Sounders FC finished the month of August 4-1-0 this season, giving them a 13-5-4 all-time August record.
*Seattle is 4-1-3 all time against Columbus, the lone loss coming last season (5/23) at CenturyLink Field.
*Michael Gspurning made 2 saves and earned his eighth clean sheet of the season. The Austrian has now recorded consecutive shutouts for the third time this season.
74′ Final sub for shorthanded Sounders: Burch for Rosales.
61′ Traore in for Eddie Johnson as Sounder continue to defend, 1-0 lead.
60′ Gspuring gets down for nice 1-on-1 save from Oduro shot.
Second half: … is under way.
Halftime: Sounders lead, 1-0. Schmid says he wants wide midfielders getting back better in the second half.
19′Brad Evans out with calf injury. Servando Carrasco in.
14′ GOAL Sounders. Eddie Johnson heads in a free kick from Mauro Rosales. Seattle, 1-0.
Goal is followed by controversial celebration, which you can see above. Some are reading his lips as “Pay me,” along with the show-me-the-cash fingers motion.
Seventh minute: Leo Gonzalez hauls down Crew breakaway, and since Crew had clear path to goal, red card awarded. Sounders will have to go 84 minutes one-man down.
First kick: … has been struck. We’re under way, Crew in yellow/yellow; Sounders in shale/shale.
Update:KONG coverage is back on and it looks like game will kick off around 6:10.
Delay: Word from Columbus that first kick will be delayed due to serious weather in the area.
Lineup: G Gspurning; D Yedlin, Scott, Hurtado, Gonzalez; M Rosales, Evans, Alonso, Neagle’ F Johnson, Dempsey. Reserves: Hahnemann, Traore, Ianni, Burch, Carrasco, Estrada, Zavaleta.
Pregame: Sounders and Crew will kick off at around 4:30 p.m. today. The game will be shown on KONG 6/16 and broadcast on the usual radio outlets. I’ll also blog it here and have additional updates on Twitter @donruiztnt.
We know Obafemi Martins and Shalrie Joseph are out, but otherwise coach Sigi Schmid seems able to go with something close to his First XI lineup — before losing it again tomorrow when three starters head out to join the U.S. national team.
But first things first: I’ll be back with the lineups soon.