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Full Sounders group stage schedule finalized

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My prognostications weren't 100 percent accurate, but I was right that the Sounders would play Saprissa in Round 3 (not hard to figure out, but it's something...). As it turns out, we'll hit the road for that match on Sept. 14, which actually is reasonably convenient.

The Sounders will host Real Salt Lake Sept. 9, presumably take a couple days off and then fly to Costa Rica. They'll then most likely fly straight to Columbus for their match on Sept. 18.

If my calculations are correct they might be away from home for as long as two weeks. I'm assuming they'd fly from Columbus to Monterrey, Mexico for their match on Sept. 22 and then have to fly back to Chicago for that match on Sept. 25 before heading back home. That's a total roundtrip distance of about 10,000 miles, at least according to the best information I could find.

The Sounders would then host Marathon on Sept. 29 and play Toronto at Qwest on Oct. 2. They would finally close out CCL Group Stage play on Oct. 19 with a home match against Saprissa. In between the TFC and Saprissa matches are two more MLS contests. It's still not entirely clear where a potential U.S. Open Cup championship match would fit on the schedule. Last year's semifinal was on July 21, meaning the tournament is already more than a month behind where it was last year. If there's the same gap between the semis and finals, we could expect that match to be played sometime around either Oct. 6 or Oct. 12. The Friendly C will most likely have to be played on one of those days (or there around) or, perhaps more likely, on Aug. 22.

As far as I know, only season-ticket holders currently have access to buy tickets for the CCL matches as of right now. Sales to the general public should open on Monday. The good news is that I've been told the team will open up as many seats as there's demand for. What this means is that if demand is strong enough to fill all 67,000 seats, the team is open to doing that. Obviously, that's a stretch, but if the Sounders are in position to advance to the knockout stage with a result against Saprissa, I don't think it's impossible.

After the jump, I put the potential schedule into list form. As you'll be able to see, the Sounders face the very real possibility of having no more than six days between any two matches for the rest of the season and could very well end up playing 15 matches from Aug. 19-Oct. 9, a span of 52 days if my math and projections are correct.

 

Aug. 8: vs. Houston
Aug. 14: at Chivas USA
Aug. 19: at Marathon (CCL)
Aug. 22: Potential date for Friendly C
Aug. 25:
vs. Monterrey (CCL)
Aug. 28: vs. Chicago
Sept. 1: vs. Chivas USA (USOC)
Sept. 4: at New England
Sept. 9: vs. Salt Lake
Sept. 14: at Saprissa (CCL)
Sept. 18: at Columbus
Sept. 22: at Monterrey (CCL)
Sept. 25: at Chicago
Sept. 29: vs. Marathon (CCL)
Oct. 2: vs. Toronto
Oct. 6: potential date for USOC final or Friendly C
Oct. 9: at Kansas City
Oct. 12: potential date for USOC final or Friendly C
Oct. 15: vs. Chivas USA
Oct. 19: vs. Saprissa (CCL)
Oct. 23: at Houston (end of MLS regular season)