Three cheers for the Seattle Sounders! Hooray! Yippee! Fuck yeah^! On Sunday the Sounders defeated their bitterest of rivals, the Portland Timbers because of course they did. The Sounders, winners of three of their last five games of all competitions, didn't look particularly sexy, but wins are wins. Meanwhile, the Timbers, desperately seeking validation, failed to impress in Seattle, again. I, for one, am glad that the Sounders won, however that's nothing noteworthy because of course I'm happy they won. The fact it came against Portland, well, that's just the icing atop the cake. Fuck yeah, am I right?
^ By the way, this post may include swearing.
Was it a dominating performance, no. But a win is a win is a win. Three points is three points, not style points; those don't matter. Give the team some time to fully integrate the new players and they'll start dominating. There's still Clint Dempsey and Ozzie Alonso to fit into the Starting XI. It'll be a fun next two months, that's for sure.
If you heard Timbers Head Coach Caleb Porter and his comments after the game, the Sounders were lucky to win the game, thanks in part to some allegedly poor refereeing. But I won't talk about all that nonsense, that's just Porter saying whatever he has to say to spin himself and his team in a favorable light. Instead of owning up to things and saying, "Yeah, we made a couple mistakes and Seattle capitalized on them," he instead runs out the tried and try, "We got screwed; we should've won," excuse he's been rolling out after every loss.
Do you guys remember last year when I told you I was ghostwriting a novel for Bruce Arena? The working title, "Bruce Arena: America's Bogan" ultimately ended up being titled, "Arena Football" so go pick up your copy today (don't actually go pick up a copy, I don't get royalties). After I finished writing that biography, I was contracted to ghostwrite another biography for another American soccer coach. I can't name names due to my nondisclosure agreement, but let's say his name rhymes with Fail-ebb Shorter.
After Sunday's game I was talking to Caleb and... oh shit, I just disclosed his name. Well, cat's out of the bag now. So I called him to get his thoughts about losing to Seattle again, about failing to win the Cascadia Cup again, and his petulant post-game comments. I'll try and detail you that conversation below, leaving out the juicy details for the book (just kidding, I get paid regardless of whether anybody buys the book or not).
Me: Hey Caleb.
CP: [Heavy sigh, maybe the faintest hint of a whimper] Hey Ethan. I bet you're pretty happy right about now.
Me: You know I separate my professional life from my personal, Caleb. But yes, I'm pretty pleased.
CP: It's just not fair! We tried really really hard and practiced really good this week and the Sounders cheated and the referee cheated!
Me: How did the Sounders cheat?
CP: They were fouling us left and right and nothing was called. Their first goal, that Nelson Valdez guy practically two-footed studs-up tackled Nat Borchers from behind, that should've been a red card. Then Obafemi Martins literally picked up Alvas Powell and body slammed him to the ground before kicking his goal. Then later he went out of his way to initiate contact with Adam Kwarasey and got a penalty out of it! Ridiculous.
Me: Don't you think maybe you're seeing those instances with rose-colored glasses on?
CP: Rose-colored, Rose City, that's clever, Ethan.
Me: Uhh, that's an idiom, Caleb, I didn't come up with that.
CP: Oh. Well, what does it mean?
Me: It means you're seeing something in a positive way, skewing your perception of what actually happened.
CP: No, those things actually happened!
Me: Uh huh.
CP: They're real, I swear it! Ugh, why can't I just be a winner? Why did I have to lose to Seattle?
Me: It's alright, Caleb. You won tied last week and won two weeks ago. You still win some games.
CP: But I want to win all the games!
[Caleb breathes heavily over the phone. Whenever he gets like this I just have to remain silent until he calms himself down.]
CP: Sorry, man.
Me: No worries. How do you think Timbers fans and Gavin and Merritt will take the fact that Portland is already out of contention for the Cascadia Cup?
CP: Oh god, don't remind me. I'll just spin some bullshit about how we were the better team out there, about how we out shot Seattle like 20 to 5. They love to hear that shit.
Me: Do you think that'll buy you some leeway?
CP: They always do. I might add as a throwaway that we've got the highest points ever at this stage of the season, I dunno.
Me: How do you take to the idea that the Timbers might not even make the playoffs?
CP: It sucks, dude. I try really hard and we're the best team every week and sometimes the, I dunno, it just feels like we're always screwed out of wins. Like I work damn hard, you know? I deserve to win.
Me: Doesn't every team work hard though?
CP: I mean, yeah, sure, but I deserve it more.
Me: Do you think you deserved it more than Seattle?
CP: Uh, hello? Duh! And what was up with Brad Evans penalty kick? Every goddamn time he takes a penalty he kicks it to his right, but this time he kicks that shit to the left? What the fuck, man?
Me: Maybe he's just good at penalties?
CP: See, this is what I'm talking about! It's just not fair. He should've kicked it to the right!
Me: You seem really upset over this.
CP: Well, I didn't get my nap today. Goddamn afternoon matches.
Me: Do you think you'll get fired if you and the Timbers don't make the playoffs?
CP: Me? Fired? Get real. Have you met Merritt or Gavin? I look like goddamn Da Vinci next to those two. They're still freaked out that the "Porter-Ball for Dummies" book was real and that other teams will buy it. They're a couple of plebs.
Me: Plebs? You mean plebeians? That's pretty harsh to say about your boss and his boss.
CP: Whatever, I'm untouchable in their eyes. I could not win a game for an entire year and just roll out the we got screwed, we should've won, we were the better team, et cetera rant. I got it made.
CP: See, even you're impressed with me.
The rest of the conversation devolved into his exclusive nuts and yogurt diet and how he wish he could grow a beard worthy of the Pacific Northwest, so I'll spare you the details.
I'm stoked the Sounders won, especially at the expense of Portland. Here's to hoping it's the beginning of a better tomorrow, which it surely will be. Toronto is up next. Let's start a winning streak, shall we?
Our vicious rivals are in town.
A win would be great, but a loss?
Nevermind losing, Oba won't let that happen.
It was pretty shoddy defense by the Timbers.
But as a Sounders fan, I'm loving this.
The way Oba outwits the Timbers is pleasing to my soul.
Portland's defense is really hanging themselves out to dry.
Good ol' Wonder Brad. What a guy.
What do you think of this game so far, Porter?
I'm not sure the Timbers know what to do with these shots.
Well, piss, Seattle's set-piece defense isn't good, is it?
At least the Sounders won!
We'll take all three points and the Cascadia Cup lead, thank you very much.
Good thing the Timbers lost with dignity.
At least they got all those shots off though, right?
Way to stay classy to the end, Porland. Never change.