The San Jose Earthquakes can nearly be finished off with a win by Seattle Sounders FC. Their playoff position is precarious enough and getting to 10 losses with only 13 matches to play would make their journey quite tough. Both teams have injury concerns and the 'Quakes best player just pounded Cuba while wearing the Red, White and Blue.
But Osvaldo Alonso is back! And that means things will be better for Seattle; more midfield duels won, more chances created, more chances prevented. He is likely to be the higher of the two central midfielders today so his ability to create should come into play. That means that Neagle and Johnson must make strong angular runs to cut through a defense that sits deep with two midfielders in front of them. Service from the right flank via Yedlin and Rosales is also important. This will come in part from Rosales slipping into the middle pulling Baca out from the his support of their centerbacks.
Seattle's defense will be challenged in the air, both during the run of play and on dead balls. Whether Scott or Hurtado start is not quite as important as making certain that the slop cleaned up after a won/lost header is cleaned up by someone in Rave Green. It's a tough match, mainly due to injury and home field advantage. The opportunity for three points and a trophy (quite minor, but existing) are there.
Kickoff is shortly after 7:30 PM.
TV: KING 5/105 (Fletcher/Keller)
Radio: KIRO 97.3 FM (Fletcher/Keller)
Spanish Radio: La Gran D 99.3 FM (Aleman/Hernandez)
Spanish TV: THIS-TV - KOMO 4.2 (Mendez/Alcaraz)
Referee: Sorin Stoica - MLS Career: 15 games; FC/gm: 26.9; Y/gm: 4.3; R: 2; pens: 7
AR1 (bench): Paul Scott; AR2 (opposite): Mike Kampmeinert; 4th: Jesus Cisneros
Suspended next yellow card: SJQ: Alan Gordon
Suspended next two yellow cards: SJQ: Rafael Baca, Steven Lenhart, Chris Wondowlowskiw SEA: Eddie Johnson (good behavior reduced him by one), Jhon Kennedy Hurtado
- Defend the Air
- Angular Cuts Inside
- Dead Ball Defense
- Service Says
How We're Watching
Scarf: Nos Audietis 2012
Kit: Sounder at Heart logo T
Where I'm Watching: The Berliner (Renton)
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PS. We're doing something new tonight. There will be a second half gamethread to help reduce the slow downs that occurred during the Whitecaps match. At this time second half threads will only be for away matches.