Seattle Sounders FC had never lost a competitive match on a night with a fully open stadium. That little piece of trivia died last night. The Vancouver Whitecaps single goal was enough win. The vaunted rave green offense came up dry.
Despite dominating things like possession (61.6%), aerial duels (24-19), shots, corners, interceptions, dribbles and even having more passes in the attacking third than the Whitecaps had in the game there was no joy in SoDo Friday night.
Sigi's quotes point out that he wants more width and that the club still has plenty to play for this year.
VAN- Manneh (Pedro Morales) 45'
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei, Brad Evans, Chad Marshall, Jalil Anibaba (Andy Rose 82'), Leo Gonzalez, Marco Pappa (Chad Barret 62'), Osvaldo Alonso, Micheal Azira (Gonzalo Pineda 65'), Lamar Neagle, Clint Dempsey, Obafemi Martins
Substitutes Not Used: Marcus Hahnemann, Kenny Cooper, Zach Scott, Djimi Traore
TOTAL SHOTS: 10 (Dempsey, 4); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (3 tied at 1); FOULS: 14 (Pappa, 3); OFFSIDE: 0; CORNER KICKS: 6 (Pappa, 5) ; SAVES: 2 (Frei, 2).
Vancouver Whitecaps - David Ousted, Jordan Harvey, Kendall Waston, Andy O'Brien, Steven Beitashour, Mauro Rosales (Mehdi Ballouchy 70'), Matias Laba, Russell Teibert, Pedro Morales (Nicolas Mezquida 81'), Erik Hurtado, Kekuta Manneh (Kianz Froese 45')
Substitutes Not Used: Paolo Tornaghi, Sam Adekugbe, Johnny Leveron, Ethen Simpson
TOTAL SHOTS: 6 (Manneh, 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 3 (Manneh, 2); FOULS: 16 (Laba, 6); OFFSIDE: 0 ; CORNER KICKS: 2 (2 tied at 1); SAVES: 2 (Ousted, 2) .
SEA- Leo Gonzalez (caution) 41'
SEA- Clint Dempsey (caution) 64'
VAN- Kevin Waston (caution) 74'
VAN- Matias Laba (caution) 85
Referee: Jair Marrufo
Referee's Assistants: Frank Anderson, Jeff Hosking
4th Official: Alejandro Mariscal
Time of Game: 1:54
Weather: Cloudy and 63 Degrees
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial
Postgame Quotes - Sounders FC 0 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC 1
Sigi Schmid - Sounders FC Head Coach
(Opening Statement...) "Obviously disappointed in the result. I don't know if it's necessarily a game we deserved to win, but it wasn't a game we deserved to lose. A little breakdown at the end of the first half there when Manneh was off injured and came onto the field, catches us by surprise. We had some chances, but I didn't think we had a ton of clean looks. They did a good job packing it in the back, in the middle. It really clogged up the middle of the field on us."
(On the goal...) "Evans had gone forward with the ball and the referee lets the guy on the field. He usually doesn't let him on the field when the ball is on the same side of the field."
(On opposing chances...) "With the exception of the goal, and the other time they had a good counter off their speed was when Ozzie took the shot that was deflected and they came off the counter there. Outside of that, their chances came late when we took the chance with the 3-5-2 and pushed people up."
(On why there weren't many chances...) "It's because they clogged up the middle."
(On Gonzalo Pineda not starting...) "He's still being bothered a bit by his foot, that's why you didn't see a lot of balls across field to open the game up, and that's normally something he provides for us as well. At the end, obviously, the adrenaline kicked in and he started hitting free kicks and things like that."
(On Leo Gonzalez's performance...) "I thought Leo was solid. I didn't think Mauro (Rosales) did much of anything."
(On the refereeing...) "The game is always physical when Marrufo refs the game because he lets the game go. Adding time is great-and he didn't cost us the game, don't get me wrong; the referee did not cost us the game-but if the goalkeeper is going to do that you've got to card him. That's the only way it's going to change. It's the time, but it's also the momentum of the game. If you're taking 30 seconds to every time for a goal kick, and it started in the beginning of the game, and the referee didn't have communication pieces, so they couldn't talk to each other, I don't know how that happened. At the end of the day for us he allows a physical game and we have to be prepared for that."
(On what to play for...) "We have a lot to play for. Our goals of [winning] Supporters' Shield hasn't changed and our goal of winning MLS Cup hasn't changed. We might need a little bit of help from Dallas maybe, but we need to take care of business the last two games."
(On the importance of the game...) "For them it was. They are trying to push to get in the playoffs. In fairness to them, like I said, they were very well organized and they really packed the middle of the field. We really needed to create more width, but we didn't quite get that done, so we will move forward."
(On areas to improve...) "To get more width. Marco (Pappa) was coming inside and the middle of the field was already crowded, there was no space in there to play and we needed to get behind their outside backs and we didn't do a good job getting behind their outside backs the whole game."
(On the substitutes...) "We felt (Chad) Barrett could play wing, he is a better winger than Cooper is, so that's why we brought him on. We needed to bring in Pineda because he has good ideas to get in the flow of the game. With Andy Rose we wanted to get three in midfield and you win more balls there."
Brad Evans -Sounders FC Midfielder
(On the Vancouver goal...) "They had a clear, Morales gets on the ball, and Manneh was off the field and then came back on the field, so maybe our defenders didn't shift over in time or didn't recognize he was going to go back on in that time. For me, watching it from behind, it's just shifting again."
(On Manneh entering the field...) "I am expecting the referee to not give them an advantage. When we are pushing forward there is always a risk of a counter-attack, so the referee has to wait until the play is done or they are off on a counter-attack without him getting that unfair advantage, stepping off the field and coming back on."
(On bouncing back...) "Right now we have to stay together. It's one loss with two games left and now we have to win two of three, and that's it. We'll see what the other results are this weekend, but regardless we should be looking to win the next two anyways and not be looking for help or favors from other teams, because that's not going to happen. Nobody said this was going to be easy, obviously everyone is disappointed... at the end of the day we lose 1-0 to a rival and now we have to have that fire to come back and play another rival back-to-back."
(On the gameplan for Los Angeles...) "We have to be smart when you play away from home. We can't be all run-and-gun from the first whistle-we can't lose our minds...because we still have the playoffs, and there is no point to going into LA, pushing forward, and getting caught in three counterattacks and losing 3-0 and then we have even more to work on going into the playoffs...Hopefully we will play our style and get a result in a smart way."
Osvaldo Alonso - Sounders FC Midfielder
(On the game...) "It is what it is. We have to forget about it we have the next two games in Dallas. We lost the Cascadia Cup, but we have the playoffs coming up so we have to look forward now."
(On if it was hard to get much going offensively...) "Yeah we have to figure out how to play from outside. Unfortunately we lost today, but like I said before we have to look forward for the next two games."
Chad Barrett - Sounders FC Forward
(On if he has seen that before where a player is waved on and gets in the middle of a counter attack...) No, no. I would have to see the whole thing again. Everybody was seeing a lot of different things. It was somebody's fault. I don't know whose fault it was, I don't know when it was waved on, but I'm sure that if he was in the wrong it was a mistake. It wasn't what lost us the game, obviously it was a bad time to take the rule, but we came out and like I said we had some chances, but we still have to find ways to beat them without playing."
(On the coaches' instructions for you when you came into the game...) "He just said that we want to get width, we want to try and get behind their outside backs and try to get in. They made it real difficult because they drop every time you get the ball. There is no place in behind to go so we're going to have to find ways to pack it in because come playoffs that is what every team is going to do against us here. If we get a goal on them early, they're still going to do the same things in the playoffs. We're going to have to tighten things up, we're going to have to be a team that takes no goals, and we're going to be that team. We're going to have to adopt a new mentality not the road because playoffs are a completely different thing. I'm sure that we're going to take a long look at a lot of things that we do over this next week. There are going to be a lot of tactics talked about this week, set plays and all of that stuff because all of that can get better for us."
(On if these feel like playoffs matches to him and what is his mindset going into these games...) "It's a great thing that we have these two games coming up. This is what it is. It's a playoff game before the playoffs. It'll be a good warmup against the next best team in the league for us. We're the top two teams, and just like Portland was rooting for us tonight, we're going to be rooting for Dallas to do something and help us out. It's going to be a crazy game, anything can happen in the MLS, and FC Dallas is a good team at home, but if they don't do it, we have to beat LA twice, or we have to beat and tie them. It's very doable. We're not panicking or doing anything like that right now, but we definitely have to go back to the drawing board."
Carl Robinson - Whitecaps FC Head Coach
(On the win...) "To say I'm lost for words is an understatement. I'm so proud of every single one of them today. Not many people gave us the opportunity and believed that we would win, but I did and 1,250 fans did. The group did, too, and that's the most important thing."
(On maintaining the lead during the second half...) "It's excellent discipline. We can set it up for them and give them examples but when they cross the line it's up to them. The last three weeks they have taken responsibility on themselves. Today it was in a tough environment against a top team with a top manager. There's a possibility they could win the Supporters Shield. It's credit to that group and it all comes down to them."
(On Kekuta Manneh's injury...) "He looked at full speed 1v1 but then after he scored I think he thought about it and started hobbling off. We had a big decision to make at half time. He was excellent. Credit to him. Maybe he has to play Seattle away every time. He was electric and had numerous chances before he scored. I felt that it was an area that, without DeAndre Yedlin, we could get at them. Brad Evans is a fantastic player but he's a midfielder. As I've shown before, I'm not afraid to throw the young kids in."
(On subbing Mauro Rosales out...) "He hurt his hamstring. I was going to wait until the 89th minute to give him the round of applause from all of the fans. You don't really see too many players getting cheered from both sets of supporters so when you do it's a special thing. I was going to do it but he obviously hurt his hamstring."
(On the defensive effort...) "It was our will to win. I said jokingly that we might need to score five goals because Seattle has been on fire. It took one goal. We are delighted we got it but we still have a lot of work to do. It puts us in a decent position but we still have Portland chasing behind us. We'll enjoy the weekend but we still have work to do. The win today is for the supporters out there."
(On the team effort...) "Everyone was brilliant. I'm so proud of them and I have 100% faith in them."
(On Kendall Waston...) "I brought him to the club to do a job. I think everyone has seen in a short amount of time how valuable he really is. He's an absolute monster. He's a bit like what Chad Marshall is to Seattle. He's been a fantastic player in the league and he's a massive part of Seattle's defense. We've got someone like that now. I'm really pleased for him."
(On how they got a shutout...) "I really don't know. Maybe the soccer gods; I've talked about them all week. We needed a little bit of luck. They were putting balls into the box and we were frustrating them. They are a top team; make no doubt about it. Today was our day. We'll enjoy the moment but we still have a lot of work to do."
(On the next two games...) "I've said all along that if we take care of our business then we'll get to it. If we don't then we don't deserve to be there. It's irrelevant what Portland is doing so I'll make sure the group is focused on our business."
(On winning on the road...) "It's special when you do it here against a top team. We've matched up quite well against Seattle this year. You have to enjoy these moments because they don't happen too often."
(On this being the biggest win of the year...) "This probably is the biggest win of year so far. The game against San Jose will hopefully be the next biggest win for us. To come into a hostile environment like this makes the win more pleasing."
(On having a home playoff game...) "Everyone has their own dreams and aspirations. I'm focusing on the San Jose game because it's a tough game for us away. They are out of the playoffs now but they are fighting for contracts. It's very difficult to play a team fighting for contracts."
(On putting Kianz Froese in...) "I changed my mind four times. We thought about putting Nicolas Mezquida in but we thought Kekuta Manneh was having so much joy going on the outside of Brad Evans. We thought that Kianz Froese, because of his strengths and attributes, could do a better job than Mezquida could. It was strictly a tactical decision. The kid has the biggest smile I've ever seen in that locker room."
(On Kianz Froese performance...) "It was excellent. The kid can play. He has a great future."
(On having fear of putting Kianz Froese in...) "I had no fear. With all young players you have no fear. They have to learn and sometimes it's best learned in the toughest environments."
Mauro Rosales - Whitecaps FC Midfielder
(On the win...) "Very proud of the about the game we did today. We didn't actually play pretty today, we just fight and defend and being in a good shape, just controlling the game. They have very good players, very good team, and we got the goal and from there we work very hard to keep it. And the concentration and all the personalities that the team shows today is what we wanted for these last push of the playoffs. We needed the points, also we needed it for the fans. They came here to defend the Cascadia Cup and everybody is really happy. They have to enjoy. We have to enjoy about this sometimes the game is not going the way you want and we don't actually play really good soccer but we got the points and this is the more important. Proud of the character that we showed."
(On playing his former team...) "It was emotional and difficult because I love the way they always support me even playing for Chivas or Vancouver. They always are behind my back supporting me and I am just so glad to get. That welcome they give to me, it was the first time after a year and I just wanted to say thanks to them (Seattle fans) and now just focus on the next two games that we have."
(On finding good form with Vancouver...) "I have a lot of things to share with my teammates. I have a lot of things myself to prove and to learn and and always want to get better all the time. I am 33 years old and I'm not stopping working hard and I'm not stopping to be better all the time. This is something that is pushing me all the time to become a better player and a better person. Just being with different teams and different guys and just share what I have in all my career with different clubs
(On the memories of scoring his first goal for Seattle against Vancouver...)"I did [score] my first goal here for the Sounders of course playing against Vancouver. And I won one time the Cascadia Cup for the Sounders and now I won with Vancouver and it's really nice because the supporters there are always behind us. In this part of the country it is so much fun to play against Portland against Vancouver against Seattle. The rivalry is perfect and this should be all over the place. It's really fun to be here, really fun to get something for the supporters, too, because they are always behind our backs and they want the best for the team for the club and now we want them to be the first time in the playoffs."
Kekuta Manneh - Whitecaps FC Forward
(On the adrenaline rush of coming on and scoring...) "Defiantly. I mean it's the thing we've talked about as a team we had a meeting and we get to do this for the team. I was in pain but I felt like I had a chance to go score a goal still in pain but I had to go take the chance and it turned out to be a goal. I'm really excited for the team. I score a goal but I really wouldn't take away from the performance of the guys today I'm really proud of each one of them."
(On the situation leading up to the goal...) "Well when I came on they played Pedro Morales. I was all alone by myself and then they played Pedro...When playing with Pedro you have to expect he sees other people and I start running because I know his qualities and he plays the ball thought and it was a great pass."
Kianz Froese - Whitecaps FC Midfielder/Forward
(On the match...) "Coming in with 50,000 plus people, when Robo told me I was going in my heart dropped and you know I'm just happy to be part of the group and being able to help the guys."
(On his emotions going on to the pitch the first time...) "Yeah I feel like usually I just try and go on the field and give it my all. So every day it's just attack in the end of the day what you know slowly with time I settle down its better."
(On his teammates communicating...) "Yeah the guys were great a lot of talking a lot of they told me everything I needed to do. Jordan (Harvey) was great. He was always like come back tuck for me and help me so I was there and whatever we needed as a team and three points were vital for us."