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Sounders beat Philadelphia Union: Postgame observations

Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

A badly needed win at home feels good. If not for a superb game from Philadelphia keeper Andre Blake, this match could have been lopsided. As it was, Chad Marshall finds another, Jordan Morris nets his first for Sounders FC, and Seattle continue to build an unbeaten streak.

Morris switched something on

From the outset, Jordan Morris looked like a different player. Gone was the hesitancy, the backwards play. Against the Union Morris was looking to get behind a high defense and attack the goal, using his strength and markedly-better decision making to create danger from long balls. He showed great close control before his strike, and of course Jordan would make his professional goalscoring debut with the outside of his right foot, it's only fitting.

Oalex Anderson wasn't perfect, but he was what the Sounders needed

While Anderson's presence on the pitch in anything but a pure striker role is a defensive liability, the risk of his start against Philadelphia was clearly a calculated one by Sigi Schmid. The youngster was active and quick (even if mostly ineffective) in trying to unlock Philly. His final pass, both the decision and the quality, need work, but he earned his start by offering dynamism and speed that haven't been seen in the Sounders offense thus far. One of his best moments was his 60th-minute interchange with Clint Dempsey at the top of the box: He streaked through on a give-and-go and set up Morris with a great chance (snuffed out by Blake, who played a fantastic match between the posts for the Union).

It took too long for the Sounders to adjust to Philadelphia

The Union came into the match pressing and looking to pounce on the Sounders at home. While the defense held strong, the Sounders gave up much of the possession in the first half. This is not a bad thing in itself, but the Sounders too often were unprepared or unable to break on the counter to take advantage. Towards the end of the first 45, and certainly in the second half, the team was looking over the top, around the fullbacks, past the centerbacks, anything to get Anderson or Morris through on goal.

Too many cheap giveaways put the defense under pressure

With the fullbacks high and wide and Cristian Roldan and Osvaldo Alonso taking turns pushing forward, the space in front of Brad Evans and Chad Marshall was at times left wide open for the Union. Making this worse was a rash of poor turnovers in the central third that sent the Sounders scrambling again and again. Dempsey didn't have the best match in this department, giving away possession at awkward times for his teammates. Luckily they were up to the task.

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