That the Seattle Sounders were short-handed against the Vancouver Whitecaps was not a surprise. But when the starting lineup was announced and Obafemi Martins' name was not included, that was a bit of a shocker. Martins has not played since scoring a pair of goals and then being kicked out of the Sounders' wild 3-2 win over the Chicago Fire on June 7 and this was supposed to be his first game back.
Shortly after the lineup announcement, the Sounders revealed that Martins was being held out with a hamstring injury. Their Twitter feed said it was precautionary and Ross Fletcher suggested on the broadcast that if this had been a must-win match that Martins could have played. Which all seemed frustrating, but ultimately not such a big deal.
But when given a chance to actually explain how serious the injury was, Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid was far more vague.
Sigi says he doesn't really have prognosis yet for Oba.— Don Ruiz (@donruiztnt) July 6, 2014
Now that is a bit more concerning. Schmid could certainly be playing coy. Maybe he fully expects Martins to be able to play in Wednesday's U.S. Open Cup match against the Portland Timbers or at least in Sunday's regular-season rematch.
But considering Martins effectively missed the final two months of last season under similarly mysterious circumstances, you can hardly blame Sounders fans for being a bit gunshy when it comes to situations like this.