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Major Link Soccer: Perfect night in Seattle

General agreement the USMNT looked better than it has in a long time; plus U.S. Open Cup restarts, a strange discipline decision, and more.

Eddie Johnson celebrates his goal for the US National Team in Seattle Tuesday.
Eddie Johnson celebrates his goal for the US National Team in Seattle Tuesday.

So the soccer nation came to Seattle the past few days and laid out a list of questions - it seemed like the doubters enjoyed holding court in the lead up to the game. Would enough people show up? Would the team have a home field advantage? What about the sod-over-turf temporary field?

Then 90 glorious minutes of action, a rabid atmosphere, and great play by the Yanks - including a goal by hometown hero Eddie Johnson, changed almost all the doubts to cheers by bedtime Tuesday night.

Here's a roundup of reaction to the game:

  • Sports Illustrated's Grant Wahl on three things we learned Tuesday night. He says y'all made for a magnificent crowd, but the field still was an issue.
  • Fox Soccer's game roundup - no mea culpa yet from the writer who questioned whether Seattle could "deliver the atmosphere." Have to assume that is coming.
  • A local take from Joshua Mayers at The Seattle Times. And a nice column by the Times' Jerry Brewer on what Seattle showed to the soccer world Tuesday.
  • Soccer by Ives' game story, which credits Michael Bradley and jozy Altidore as the top performers.

The National Team's next game is next Tuesday in Salt Lake City against Honduras. Here's hoping the Yanks keep rolling and that the folks in Utah bring a similarly scintillating pro-U.S. atmosphere.

Tonight the U.S. Open Cup fourth round kicks off - the final 16. Portland gets to face the Tampa Bay Rowdies, the team that eliminated the Sounders.

The only game to get full-preview status from as of early this morning is the DC United - Philadelphia Union match, which United is taking very seriously given the Open Cup seems their only chance at hardware during what has been a dismal season.

I think the most interesting games on tap are Sporting KC versus Orlando City - with Orlando forced to bench their leading scorer, Dom Dwyer, who is on loan from Sporting - and Chivas USA versus the Carolina Railhawks, where I have to think Chivas is the most likely MLS team to be upset.

Everyone's worst nightmares about Chivas USA are starting to come through. Apparently if you play well enough for them you now get "promoted" to Guadalajara, with reports Tuesday that Eric Avila is among three players being transferred out to the Liga MX side. At Pro Soccer Talk they wonder how the league can allow Chivas USA's owners to purposefully make their MLS team worse.

Up in Toronto they have a big decision to make. On-loan striker Robert Earnshaw was pretty hot the first three weeks, but has been silent since as the team went on a free-fall down the standings. Now they have to decide whether to try and extend the loan, buy Earnshaw, or let him return to Cardiff City.

Reports out of Spain have 35-year-old Marcos Senna leaving Villarreal to sign with MLS. But it appears there may be some confusion as the rumor stateside is he is signing with the NASL's New York Cosmos.

Finally today a bit of a weird decision from the disciplinary committee: Looking back at a yellow card on Galaxy's Marcelo Sarvas, the committee decided to fine RSL's Ned Grabavoy for "simulation." But they didn't rescind the card on Sarvas, which means he misses the next Galaxy game.

- Scott Ayers

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