After a tussle with Houston Dynamo’s Will Bruin last week, Seattle Sounders FC midfielder Osvaldo Alonso was sent off for violent conduct. Alonso served the automatic punishment for such an offense, a one-match ban, against FC Dallas last Sunday. There had been talk that he could see one or more matches added to that suspension, but as of Thursday there has been no communication from the Disciplinary Committee on the matter. After Thursday’s training session, Alonso said “I’m good to play, no problem there.”
Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer reiterated this, saying that “as far as I know, no additional punishment, and we’re very happy.” The Sounders clearly missed Alonso against FC Dallas, and Schmetzer said that it’s a “big boost” to the team to have the veteran midfielder back.
Alonso’s suspension against Dallas was the third match in a row in which the Sounders had a player suspended. Nicolas Lodeiro missed the match in Vancouver due to yellow card accumulation, and captain Brad Evans was out against Houston after receiving a straight red card in Vancouver. Schmetzer has clearly been disappointed at the lack of leadership shown by his veteran players, and called the Alonso situation a “learning lesson.” He said that “we really want to make sure that in critical moments in games, we keep calm and keep playing.” Going forward, especially in a crucial game that will likely decide the team’s season, Schmetzer said that his message regarding discipline is “no más, no more.”
As for Alonso, he said that having to see his team play (and lose) from his couch was punishment enough. But he’s trying to put all of that behind him and move on. “It is what it is. Now I have to move forward and be ready to go for Sunday.” Despite not having played in over a week, Alonso said that he’s completely focused on the match against Real Salt Lake and that “physically and mentally, I’m ready to go.”