Our World Cup heroes are back. Our center midfielders are off yellow card suspensions. It is time to hunker down and get 3 points closer to the Oba World Cup finals!
Are back-to-back wins against our Cascadia rivals in our future? Let's examine some of the players to watch and look at how the Sounders compare to the Portland Timbers ahead of Sunday's evening match at CenturyLink Field.
Player / Injury Updates
Our side has a lot fewer X's this weekend. DeAndre Yedlin and Clint Dempsey are both expected to play in their first MLS match since leaving for the World Cup. I expect a HUGE CenturyLink welcome for the boys. Obafemi Martins appears to be match-ready, but his status remains uncertain.
For the Timbers, Maximiliano Urruti took a knock last week and looks to be out for the game. Defenders Pa Modou Kah (achilles tendinitis) and Norberto Paparatto (ankle) are also out, while Diego Chara has to sit due to yellow card accumulation (his red card on Friday will be applied to future Open Cup play).
For perhaps the first time this season for the Sounders, Fouls Suffered and Fouls Committed for both teams are equal. In previous matches, the Fouls Suffered total for the Sounders far outweighed opponent totals.
Related to this stat: It should come as no surprise that Diego Chara has committed the most fouls (49) this season. In second is Blas Perez, and he trails Chara by 16 fouls (33). Crazy. On the flip-side, Darlington Nagbe has suffered the most fouls (51).
Here is your weekly graph highlighting goals scored and opponent goals for both teams. If these stats could talk, they would say that minutes 16-30 appear to be a good time to take the attack to the Timbers. Hail Hydra!
Is it Sunday yet?