Category Archives: Sounders FC

Sounders set Record in Win over Timbers

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Forget about Clint Dempsey making his home debut for a minute. Last season, the Sounders and Timbers drew 66,452 to CenturyLink Field. That’s more than almost half of the teams in the NFL managed to average last season.

Add Dempsey and what do you get? The Seattle Sounders set the record for highest attended soccer match in Seattle yesterday. The 67,385 in attendance was more than what the Sounders drew in their friendly against Manchester United in 2011. The Los Angeles Galaxy still hold the record for largest MLS crowd with nearly 2,000 more in attendance for their home debut in 1996.

“Nobody compares to our fans. When they turn out in numbers like that, it’s indescribable,” Seattle coach Sigi Schmid said.

Johnson scored his fourth goal against the Timbers moments after his speed in the open field drew a free kick when he was chopped down by defender Pa Modou Kah. Mauro Rosales‘ curling ball into the box found Johnson wide open after he left defender Alvas Powell behind.

“We’re going to keep suffering if we don’t find goals and if we don’t sort out set pieces,” Portland coach Caleb Porter said.

It was Johnson’s sixth goal in MLS play. Seattle improved to 35-0-8 in its last 43 games when scoring first and controlled the second half after Portland had the better chances in the first 45 minutes.

The Sounders moved into a tie for fifth place in the Western Conference with 37 points and still have at least one game in hand on the rest of their playoff competition.

Source – espnfc.com

MF Blair Gavin Signs with Sounders FC

blair gavin sounders fc

blair gavin sounders fc

The Seattle Sounders FC have come to terms with midfielder Blair Gavin. Gavin has made 45 appearances in the MLS playing for both the New England Revolution and Chivas USA. 

Gavin, 24, was selected 10th overall by Chivas in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft. 

“Blair has been training with us for a few weeks and we are very happy to add him to our group,” said Sporting Director Chris Henderson. “He is a thinker on the field and has good technical ability. He has enough MLS experience to help us down the stretch.”

Gavin began his professional career with Chivas USA where he made 31 starts in 43 appearances, recording three goals and five assists. He joined New England midway through the 2012 season, making two appearances.

A native of Arizona, Gavin played three years at the University of Akron, finishing runner-up in the 2009 NCAA College Cup. He scored seven goals with six assists in his collegiate career, and was named to the All-Mid-American Conference First Team in his junior season.

Sounders FC hosts the Portland Timbers on Sunday. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. PT on the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field and will be nationally televised on ESPN2.

Source – SoundersFC.com

Clint Dempsey’s Sounders FC Debut Sells Out CenturyLink

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clint-dempsey-seattle-sounders-600x419

CenturyLink, a stadium built for the NFL’s Seahawks, will not be big enough to host everyone wanting to see… a soccer match?

The Sounders have been MLS’s poster team for attendance for the past four seasons, having led the league in that category each year. Even without Clint Dempsey joining the Sounders, the match against Portland had sold over 60,000 seats. Add in the American superstar and you might see the highest attended game in the leagues history.

The Sounders announced Tuesday that their Aug. 25 match versus rival Portland had sold out the 67,000-capacity CenturyLink Field, and that the club would be opening 400 bleacher seats plus offering standing room only tickets for the first time in club history for an MLS match.

The Sounders say more than 6,000 tickets were sold after Dempsey’s signing was announced Saturday. Dempsey could make his debut for Seattle on Saturday at Toronto, but he sat out training on Tuesday with an illness.

Source – ESPNFC

More than 69,000 would have to attend in order for the Sounders to top the record for attendance set by the Los Angeles Galaxy in their inaugural game played in The Rose Bowl.

With the 400 bleacher seats added to the 67,000 regular seats, plus the standing room only option, don’t be surprised if the Sounders set another MLS record on the 25th of August.

US Soccer Star Clint Dempsey Joining Sounders FC

Clint-Dempsey

Clint-Dempsey

Huge news for Seattle soccer fans as U.S. National team soccer star Clint Dempsey will be becoming a member of the Seattle Sounders.

The Seattle Sounders and Tottenham Hotspur are finalizing the transfer of U.S. national team star Clint Dempsey, who is expected to be introduced as the newest Sounder as early as Saturday, multiple sources told ESPNFC.com.

No other details –- including the transfer fee the Sounders paid Spurs to acquire the 30-year-old forward/midfielder’s rights — were provided.

Two high-ranking Sounders employees reached Thursday evening declined to comment. One said he didn’t want to jeopardize his job by confirming that a move was imminent. “But let’s put it this way: I’m not surprised I’m receiving a call,” that employee said.

Source – ESPNFC

Seattle averages over 40,000 people per home game so they are one of the few clubs in the MLS that could afford to make such a move. 

How do you feel about one of Americas biggest soccer stars coming to the Sounders?

Now or Never for Sounders

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Martins needs to continue his back-flipping form

Martins needs to continue his back-flipping form

As April comes to a close with only a single victory tallied in league play thus far, the Sounders face a tough test. Their next five games come against Philadelphia, Kansas City, San Jose, Dallas, and the LA Galaxy, with only San Jose and Dallas visiting Seattle. Finally getting three points last match may help elevate spirits in the locker room, but the single goal scored does not answer lingering questions about the squad’s offensive options. The long break between that match and these may help get some players healthy but may also have dimmed the momentum from that first victory.

The defense has been solid, having allowed multiple goals in only one league match thus far and keeping clean sheets in their last two matches. But the offense has yet to score twice in a match outside of the Champions League. Last year’s team leader Eddie Johnson hasn’t played in the last two matches. The hope is that he and offseason signing Martins can match last year’s Johnson/Montero duo with a refurbished Steve Zakuani providing some threatening width. The theory is great but it has not looked good in practice.

It’s hard to know how Schmidt will use his strikers. Martins and Johnson together may sound great but managers often have other ideas. Schmidt often chose to play either Montero or Johnson. In his defense their goal scoring record was not overwhelming when both players were on the pitch together last year. It’s hard to imagine keeping either last year’s top scorer or this year’s top signing off the pitch though.

If the Sounders go 3-1-1 in this stretch, with Martins and Johnson on the score sheet, then the early season woes will be just tiny scrapes that quickly heal. If they go 1-1-3 then lost points from matches like Portland will look more like festering open wounds.

Sounders Need to Find Goals

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Montero scored 17 times in all competitions last year

Montero scored 17 times in all competitions last year

Perhaps the biggest question facing the Sounders in 2013 is where the goals will come from. Montero and Johnson were one of the best goal scoring tandems in MLS in 2012 but Montero has moved back home to Colombia this year. Through their first four games this year the Sounders have been blanked twice and managed only one goal at home against the Timbers. In their three goal performance against Tigres, two of their goals came from defenders; not a reliable source in the future. With Johnson doing some work with the national team this weekend, the Rave Green will need someone to step up against San Jose and for the rest of the season. Here are a few of the most likely suspects:

Zakuani could be the key to the Sounders offense in 2013

Zakuani could be the key to the Sounders offense in 2013

Steve Zakuani: Before a frightening injury that robbed him of most of 2011 and 2012, Steve was a ten goal scorer for this club. So far in 2013 he seems to be playing well having assisted both of Johnson’s goals. Play making, goal scoring wingers are seriously tough to deal with. If Zakuani is near his 2010 form, it will go a long way to replacing the missing production and could make the Sounders tougher to defend than they’ve been the last couple years. But pinning their hopes on someone who hasn’t played a full season in three years is risky.

Now or Never For Sounders

Mauro Rosales: When Montero and Johnson were on the pitch together, Montero often played the role of second striker; a sort of goal scoring attacking midfielder. Rosales naturally fits into this spot but where Montero was a scorer who could pass and play-make Rosales is a true attacking midfielder who looks to set up teammates before trying his own luck. If other players have good goal-getting seasons then Rosales can drop deeper and continue in his point-guard duties. If no one steps up the Sounders may need him to stretch the back of the net more often. The concern is that he has yet to display the ability to consistently score anywhere he has played.

Rosales may have to adjust his role if the Sounders are going to find goals this season

Rosales may have to adjust his role if the Sounders are going to find goals this season

Sammy Ochoa/David Estrada/Obafemi Martins: With Montero gone, the other forwards logically will pick up many of his minutes. It is tougher to predict how they’ll use those minutes. Estrada and Ochoa showed good signs last year in the time they did get. But most of those opportunities were in cup play, not against first team opposition. Martins comes to the club with an outstanding goal scoring record with Inter Milan and Newcastle. However he is a couple years removed from that form, having bounced between Russian, English, and Spanish clubs before landing in Seattle. There’s good reason to believe one or more of these three will have a good year but not enough reason to expect it.

Working in the Sounders’ favor is one of the best midfields in the MLS. Whoever plays up front will have the benefit of good service and the defensive support to take chances. They may also be able to exploit any extra attention that Johnson receives. In the end, it may come down to Johnson. He’s off to a good start and if he can improve on his outstanding production in 2012 it should make everyone on the team better. If he struggles as the featured striker the Sounders may need to shut teams out to get wins. Having to improve one of the league’s best defenses is not easy prospect.

Even with Johnson out this weekend is a good chance to get points on the road. San Jose has not looked overly solid at the back this year and will be missing starting defender Victor Bernardez. San Jose thrives on bullying opponents but with Bernardez on international duty and their two hired thugs, Steven Lenhart and Alan Gordon, out as well they should struggle to impose themselves. It is early but falling another three points behind the conference leaders is a hole it would be better not to have to climb out of. A road victory against a rival would go a long way to turning the start to the season around.

Big Stage for Sounders

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Semis represent huge opportunity for more than Sounders

Having become the first ever MLS team to knock out a Mexican side enroute to the Semi Finals of the CONCACAF Champions league, the Sounders now stand upon the brink of even greater history. In a world where even Northern Ireland has a professional soccer league the perception of prestige is one of the most important factors in a league’s growth. Money, attendance, and tv spots go a long way but eventually you must be tested against the best and prove your worth.

SounderscrestAcross North America and the Caribbean, Mexico has long reigned supreme. An MLS team reaching the final four marks the tremendous growth of the league. Reaching and winning the whole thing would legitimize 17 years of hard work and dreams by a nation of under recognized fans and players.

Everything the Sounders have done has been unprecedented. The first team in US history to appear in 4 consecutive US Open Cup finals and first to win 3 consecutively. Record setting attendance figures, and unparalleled success for an expansion franchise. LA may have the international stars and silverware but Seattle is clearly on a path to establishing itself as the league’s trademark franchise.

But trademark franchises win championships and championships can never be taken for granted. If the Sounders want to continue to grow as they have every year thus far, a CONCACAF title would be a major step toward attracting some of the European legends that thus far have only been wooed by New York and LA.

David Estrada’s Surgery Completed Successfully

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Seattle Sounders FC forward David Estrada underwent surgery on Thursday to repair a broken metatarsal in his left foot. The surgery was succesfull and Estrada was placed on the DL, requiring him to miss at least six MLS matches before he is eligible to return.

During the 17 competitive matches that Estrada has taken part in, he scored six goals including a hat trick in the seasons first match.

While at UCLA, Estrada sustained a similar injury his sophomore year.

Estrada can return for the July 15th match in New York.

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