Dear Sounders Front Office:
As you may have noticed, the Sounders play extremely well on $1 beer nights. Of course, since it's only happened once, there is the chance that this could be a one-time thing. But with the playoffs and the USOC at stake, are you really willing to take that chance?
Think about it.
Searched for embeddable highlights. The MLSSoccer.com ones are apparently embeddable, but not by me on this site. So...go here. Enjoy. Then come back.
Yes, it was $1 beer night at Crew stadium. Didn't help their players at all, but it probably eased some of the pain for their fans. Because otherwise this would have been a rather excruciating night to follow the bumblebees.
For us Sounders fans, though? Heaven on earth. And we didn't even get the $1 beer.
Some of the good stuff from the boys in blue:
1) St. Blaise has arrived!! Right-footed AND left-footed!
Must say, the first game or two he played, he looked a little befuddled by MLS play. He got better with each match, though, and by the last match he played, he was integral in creating the chances for Fredy Montero. I had a really good feeling about what he'd do the next time out... Then he got injured and wasn't available for two weeks. But I think the first hat trick in Sounders history was worth the wait! And they weren't garbage goals, either. Even the first one involved seeing and capitalizing on Hesmer's mistake under pressure -- something our guys haven't always been so great at. And the other two goals were absolutely exquisite finishes. (And taken so calmly, too! I felt like I was watching high-level European footy. Which, at that point, I suppose I was.)
2) We have a penalty taker! And it is...Nathan Sturgis? Yes, Nathan Sturgis. Forgive me for having so little faith when you stepped up to the line, Nathan. It's just that... Well, Fredy couldn't do it. And Freddie couldn't do it. And Noonan couldn't do it. And Ozzie couldn't do it. I was starting to think we had a penalty curse. But somehow your icy cool self made it look easy. (And congrats on your first MLS goal!! Between you and Blaise, my maternal area is all warm and happy.)
3) And even though Fredy Montero didn't have his most visible night, he had an active role in that third Nkufo goal. Or...well, actually, it was more of a passive role. But the thing is, when Zak sent the ball in his direction, he probably could have taken possession and taken the shot. And a year ago, he would have. And it probably would have gone right to Hesmer. Instead he was aware of where Nkufo was and cheerfully sucked defenders in towards himself to keep Nkufo wide open to receive, and shoot, the ball. Excellent work by Zakuani to set things up, excellent work by Nkufo to finish it off... But in the middle, we have Fredy, who absolutely did his part.
4) And speaking of Zakuani and Nkufo and my maternal area, I'd forgotten they were both Congolese. Which probably explains the truly sweet goal-celebration-love between the two of them, especially after Blaise's third goal. If I can find a photo of that huge-smile hug, it's replacing the Karim Benzema France goal smiles currently serving as my computer wallpaper. It was that adorable. (Sounders fans? Make it happen. Find me that photo!)
5) We won this one without the help of any evil divots. (Although the Tyrone Marshall divot last year was one of my favorite moments in the entire 2009 season, it's nice to win it decisively straight up this time around.)
The only thing I'd complain about in the game? (Aside from the fact that they kind of played like crap until after the second goal?) The blue shirts with the green shorts. Blech. Clearly a combination picked out by a straight man. And, sadly, now that we've seen the biggest win in Sounders history in this kit combination, I'm sure we'll see it again.
(They'll need to continue with these 4-0 wins to make it worth it.)
And finally, for the record, my magic good luck earrings are still undefeated. I was out running errands and got home after kickoff, but I still took the time to change earrings before going down to watch the game. So...you're welcome.