Referee Hilario Grajeda and his assistants were a topic of conversation in the Sounders locker room, mostly through complaints that he let too much go for much of the game before coming down hard with a red card on Osvaldo Alonso.
Coach SIGI SCHMID: The early foul on Dempsey where (Diego) Chara fouls him and he ends up with an AC joint sprain – a dislocation there. He tried to play on and play through it and Chara commits I think four fouls in the first half and never gets carded. That was a key turning point in the game. And obviously you look at the times that Dempsey got fouled, that crap’s got to stop. The referee’s got to protect him, and they don’t. It doesn’t matter if a foul is early in the game or late in the game. And the first time we committed a hard foul it was immediately a yellow card on Moffat. I think that set a tone for the game as well, so I think in the second half it got a little more physical because we realized that they weren’t going to call stuff, so we talked about we have to be a little bit more physical, which we did I thought in the second half. And overall, like I said, I thought the game was at the very worst an even game.
On Alonso’s red card: “I couldn’t see exactly. The linesman said that Ozzy [Alonso] caught him with an elbow or threw an elbow in his face. And all I can tell you is, whenever things happen, Will Johnson always seems to be at the other end of things. I don’t know what he says or what he does to instigate things, but obviously Ozzy has to control his behavior, but sometimes it’s tough in the heat of the battle to do that but he needs to do better. He’s a veteran player, he needs to do better.”
ALONSO: “I put my elbow up, but I never swing. The lineman told the referee I swing my elbow, but I said No, I didn’t do it. … I put my elbow up because he come to me talking to me. I put my elbow up.”