Hey guys, it kind of stinks because the whole week I've been trying to get a review up and finally the day I have time the website kind of craps out on me. I'm having a bit of difficulty putting up extensive posts, so no real preview this week. I know, I've been slacking, and there's been so much going on that deserves writing about. So for now, your preview is going to have to be a reading list.
WHO: The Red Patch Boys
WHAT: The Return of Nate Sturgis, Sigi's Lost Love-Child
WHERE: Not your Emerald City, but mine
WHY: Because we all just need to get back to enjoying the beautiful game for what it is.
Brought to you by Ricardo Salazar
Preview of Other Seattle Preview's (so far)
HeartsofASounders' Match Card and More
Josh Boldly Predicts Where No Sounder Has Gone Before, a 2-0 Win
MLS Article Featuring El Flaco Filling In
MLS' Matthew Doyle Draws Figures
By the way, if this isn't already a normal stop for you for all things Sounders, then bookmark this Seattle news collector Seattle Pitch
Sounders to Step Up: Rosales y Flaco, the Sudamericano Bert and Ernie
These guys are going to have the entire home stage at their feet, as our offense is stripped thin tonight. They might have some back-up attacking support in Fredy Montero and Nate Jaqua (both of whom are not quite 100%), but it's times like these when their leadership and experience puts them up on the table and to the test. Hey guys, it's your time to shine.
Toronto FC Players to Watch Out For: Julian de Guzman, Joao Plata
The Canadian is one of the guys I really expected to make a bigger splash and impact in MLS than he initially did. At times a Luka Modric type playmaker, and other times a Anderson type deliverer (in his Depor days), he can be very streaky but also very frail and lazy. Another guy I like is Joao Plata, a walk-on from this year's SuperDraft. The 19-year old showed up to the MLS Combine from Ecuador, having played for the U-20 side, and has earned some playing time season under new management.
Also, I am totally looking forward to hearing Arlo struggle when Mikael Yourassowsky comes on. If you are watching at home, try to not have any beer or other liquids in your mouth at around the 75th minute for substitutions, unless your TV is plastic wrapped for spittle protection.
In Other News:
You may have already heard, but MLS destroyer of dreams and careers (I kid, but not really) Brian Mullan finally got his punishment, albeit one day late, from MLS. The announcement confirmed the early rumors floating around the internet of 10 games and a $5000 fine. If you ask me, it's somewhat expected, but I don't like the way they announced it and I seriously think it was fishy of them to be 'leaking' the punishment online. In poor taste and somewhat unprofessional, but it's what I expect from Garber.
In terms of the actual punishment, I think it's fair. To be honest, I understand everyone calling for Mullan's head (or equivalent value in his much-higher-than-average MLS salary), especially as he is a veteran. But because he's been in the league for so long, and he still made the tackle, he should know better at this point that this isn't just about him, or even Steve for that matter. What this boils down to is the level of play that the MLS wants to achieve, not just the reputation of being a physical league. Everyone's always saying, 'well at some point the league is going to mature and develop into a world-class soccer league'. This is that kind of moment, where we choose to step up and stomp that kind of dirty play out of here. And it's not Mullan's fault or the ref's fault, but it starts at the very top with the league executives. This whole ordeal is going to be a clear message, and everyone in this system needs to get that into their heads. This is about American soccer, from the top down all the way to the wee little kids and bloggers like me. Week in, week out, we come out to support it, and the players need to understand that they are playing to support it too.
Now, in non-Sounders related news, this has been a really trying time for the league. But, please show your support for the Chicago Fire. Earlier tonight, Kabiru Adewunmi, a 16-year old Chicago Fire Academy player, was shot and killed in a shooting. US soccer and MLS lost an incredible kid with talent and potential. Please take a moment to think about the fact that in the end, we all love this game. Our thoughts go out to the Chicago Fire family.
On a slightly happier note, I love Sounders trivia. I also love free pizza. Think you know everything about the Sounders? Papa John's is willing to bet a pizza that you don't!