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Sounders at Portland, player ratings

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Martins leads the way to big road win.

Here is a key to the standard 1-10 scale.
1. Horrible
2. Awful
3. Poor
4. Flawed
5. Adequate
6. Good
7. Very good
8. Great
9. Superb
10. World Class

Obafemi Martins put on a show, and almost all of his teammates joined in, as the Seattle Sounders played their best MLS game in more than a month, beating Portland Timbers in Portland 4-2.

Oba was a scene stealer, with his amazing run-through, close-touch goal the highlight of a game that saw a lot of Sounders highlights. I know this game felt great for everyone, players and supporters. So let's get right to the player ratings and enjoy.

I can't wait to see your ratings as well.

Stefan Frei: 7. I thought Stefan was very good in this one, with a couple of really top-notch saves, especially the one on Will Johnson's longish shot. Plus he was hitting players downfield with his goal kicks much better than usual, a fact that Martins took great advantage of, with top notch hold-up play.

DeAndre Yedlin: 7. The second straight really good game from DeAndre, this time without the one mistake. In fact I didn't have any mistakes at all in my notebook for DeAndre, just 7 pluses in my notebook. Among other things, DeAndre tied for the team lead in tackles, including one tackle at the edge of the box that is a lot like we all wished he had done to Cordell Cato in midweek. DeAndre seems to be really on a different plane at this point. His offense is good. His defense is much improved. And he seems to be making smart decisions about when to go and when to stay back that he wasn't making back in April.

Chad Marshall: 6. Chad was good in this game, but barely reached a 6 in my book. The stats at Whoscored.com had him completing only 37 percent of his passing attempts, which is way down from a normal performance for him. He still won basically everything in the air, though.

Zach Scott: 5. Zach received the lowest rating for this game in my impact plays notebook, with a couple of poor defensive plays and clearances zero-summing his effective clearing of the ball. Zach was actually more effective at clearing than Marshall in this game, except those two or three times when he made a mistake and shuttled the ball directly to a Timbers player 20 yards from goal.

Leo Gonzalez: 5. Leo has had a good string of strong games going, but this effort was not up to that level. He was out of position on one of the goals and completed only 56 percent of his pass attempts. He had six long balls that basically went to no one. I don't think Leo was bad in this game but it wasn't up to the standard we are used to seeing.

Osvaldo Alonso: 6. Ozzie's passing game was as on as usual, with a 90 percent completion rate. He tied for the team lead in tackles. Despite that I only had him at plus-5 in my impact plays notebook. He played well in this game but I don't think he had as much influence as some of the other players. If I gave half points I'd probably go to 6.5 for Ozzie on this one.

Gonzalo Pineda: 7. Like Alonso, I scored Gonzalo a plus-5 in my notebook. Also like Alonso he completed a vast majority of his passing, connecting on 85 percent. I scored Gonzo slightly higher here for his assist. Making that short pass in traffic in the right spot in the path of his give-and-go partner Martins is a lot harder than he made it look.

Brad Evans: 6. This score is likely to start a lively discussion again along the lines of how do you judge one game-making play versus 78 minutes of action. Brad was not great this game. He even said so after the game. But then he had that one play where he beat his man and made a pass to allow Martins an easy tap-in goal - a spectacular run.

Marco Pappa: 6. Marco made some really spectacular key passes in this game, springing the forwards for long counter-attacks. I particularly loved his flying sidekick pass in the first half that sprung Martins on a run. Still, his passing percentage was way down, only 60 percent completed, and though he helped out on defense well, a lot of his clearances were just to space that a Timber picked up. I wasn't surprised when he was the first one taken off as he seemed to have slowed a bit in the second half.

Clint Dempsey: 8. Clint had a goal and an assist and a whole slew of accurate, intricate passes. A great performance. Something about Clint in Portland is just magical.

Obafemi Martins: 9. MOTM. Oba played a part in all four goals. He was simply spectacular in this game. His hold-up play was great. He created chances for himself and others, and he sliced through the Timbers defense like Timber Joey chain sawing through Michael Harrington's calves. If you wanted to say anything negative about Oba's performance you would point out he completed less than 70 percent of his passes. But then why would you want to say anything bad about this performance? It was truly superb.

Subs:

Chad Barrett (63rd minute): 7. This is basically Chad's MO for the past two months: Come in and play decent-but-not-spectacular most of the time, but then take the chance he is given and score a goal. Chad Barrett has been lethal this season. Think about that. Chad Barrett has been lethal. Did any of us who have been watching MLS for a decade ever dream we would say that?

Lamar Neagle: (78th minute): 6. Lamar looked really good as fresh legs off the bench, especially in a forward role. I only had him down for a couple impact plays, but one of them was a shot on goal. Nice work for 15 minutes.

Andy Rose: (80th minute): 5. Not much impact here.