Not much went right in this match. The defense gave up three goals, the offense struggled to create dangerous chances, and the Sounders return home with no points. This was not the Rapids of last year, instead it's a team at 2 points per game, with 5 wins out of 8 played, and they just added Jermaine Jones. Losing away to the Rapids without several starters was probably expected, but that doesn't make it any easier to swallow.
To add to that, Brad Evans picked up a late double yellow and a suspension, which he comments on below. Sigi Schmid is unhappy with the team, but he's also unhappy with himself and the rest of the staff.
The Sounders are 2-4-1, -3 GD, which is good for 9th in the Western Conference.
Saturday, April 23, 2016
Venue: Dick's Sporting Goods Park
Referee: Jorge Gonzalez
Assistants: Adam Garner, Kyle Longville
Fourth Official: Younes Marrakchi
Weather: Mostly cloudy and 66 degrees
COL - Jermaine Jones (Shkelzen Gashi) 20'
COL - Luis Solignac (Dominique Badji, Mekeil Williams) 51'
SEA - Jordan Morris (Cristian Roldan) 63'
COL - Kevin Doyle (Dennis Castillo, Sam Cronin) 86'
COL - Dominique Badji (caution) 1'
COL - Mekeil Williams (caution) 14'
COL - Jermaine Jones (caution) 20'
COL - Eric Miller (caution) 47'
SEA - Brad Evans (ejection) 86'
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Tyrone Mears, Brad Evans, Chad Marshall, Joevin Jones; Osvaldo Alonso, Cristian Roldan, Andreas Ivanschitz (Erik Friberg 50'); Oalex Anderson (Dylan Remick 77'), Jordan Morris, Herculez Gomez (Aaron Kovar 71')
Substitutes not used: Tyler Miller, Zach Scott, Oniel Fisher, Darwin Jones
Total shots: 13 (Alonso, 4)
Shots on goal: 5 (Alonso/Morris, 2)
Fouls: 11 (Gomez, 3)
Corner-kicks: 5 (Kovar, 2)
Saves: 6 (Frei, 6)
Colorado Rapids - Zac MacMath; Mekeil Williams, Bobby Burling, Eric Miller (Dennis Castillo 60'), Axel Sjoberg; Dominique Badji (Kevin Doyle 78'), Sam Cronin, Jermaine Jones (Dillon Powers 87'), Micheal Azira, Shkelzen Gashi; Luis Solignac
Substitutes not used: Conor Doyle, Chris Froschauer, Dilllon Serna
Total shots: 14 (Jones/Gashi, 4)
Shots on goal: 9 (4 players tied with 2)
Fouls: 16 (Jones, 4)
Offside: 1 (Jones, 1)
Corner-kicks: 5 (Gashi, 5)
Saves: 4 (MacMath, 4)
Head Coach Sigi Schmid - Seattle Sounders
On any problems of belief amongst the team...
There was no leadership on the field. You know, I expect more and I think they need to expect more from each other. So it rests on my shoulders at the end of the day, maybe we didn't have them prepared enough. But you can't always prepare for everything. Colorado did a good job of bringing Gashi off the front line and they picked up a lot of balls there. And nobody on the field for us ever figured that out and this isn't basketball where you can call a timeout.
On having most of the possession throughout the game...
Possession doesn't mean anything. You know every team that has had less possession this weekend has won. I think everybody gets all hung up on possession because they see Bayern Munich and they can get away with their possession because they have individuals who are able to wiggle out of trouble, and you can have excellent spacing and everything you want out of your team, but if your guys aren't good enough to wiggle out of that problem, you're going to lose the ball.
And so it's not just possession, it's also defending and getting up to people and getting close to people. We had enough chances but our possession didn't amount to anything at the end of the day because we didn't do a good enough job defensively.
On how the team felt after getting the first goal...
We felt we had a chance to equalize the game. Obviously there's guys who haven't played 90 minutes ... and we did we get enough production from guys who came on becomes a question. But at the end of the day, there's opportunities there, and there was opportunity there tonight for us to tie this game and we didn't make use of it.
On being so unhappy with the team and whether it's the first time he's been this upset with his club's performance...
No, I thought the first three games of the year, even though we lost, we were unfortunate. And we played better and we created more chances than the opponent and we were unlucky today. I thought we, as a unit, and I don't mean just the players, we as a unit -- coaching staff, players, you know -- we beat ourselves today. As much as Colorado played well and did a good job, I don't want to take anything away from Pablo's team. But we did not play well.
Forward Hérculez Gómez- Seattle Sounders
When did you learn that you would start how did it feel...
I was first aware of it sometime before training ended. I felt fine. It was about getting that second wind and once I got it, that felt good, I felt active. It was unfortunate to not get one today, but that's the way it goes sometimes.
On what was missing and working...
Things that were working were our movement. Jordan and I at times were interchanging between the wing and that number nine spot and it was causing some problems for them. I got on the end of a few things in the box. Jordan was causing havoc. For Jordan's goal, I think Cristian looks for me and I know that Jordan is behind me so I let it run and he put forward a great individual effort to get it into the back of the net.
On the pk save jumpstarting them a little bit...
I don't think anybody can count us out no matter how much time is left or what the score is. That was our mindset.
Defender Brad Evans- Seattle Sounder
On the team beating themselves...
I think the first three games this year we beat ourselves as well. We haven't been playing especially well, I think we can all be honest in that. We've said it after every game, so we've been lucky with a couple of home results. So tonight it caught up with us.
On his red card...
Yeah, I see the same exact tackle - even worse in my eyes- than my first half tackle that stopped the play and got awarded a free kick along with what I thought was offside. So I went up to him and said, ‘How is that any different than my tackle in the first half.' He said, ‘It's different, it's different.' I said, ‘you need to talk to me,' he said, ‘no.' I gave him an expletive and he gave me a yellow card. I said, ‘it's your duty to talk to me on the field, he said, ‘no it's not.' I gave him another expletive and that was the double yellow.
On the team pushing the Rapids back a bit...
We had them on the ropes for the last 25-30 minutes. So we started sending more and more numbers forward and then a couple of breaks in the back and we get lucky with a couple of saves. Stephen Frei comes up with a massive save on the penalty kick and maybe that jump-started everything. Unfortunate to give up the third one and not get the second to tie it up and get out of here with a tie. We are still creating chances no doubt, we've just got to be more fluid.
Head Coach, Pablo Mastroeni - Colorado Rapids
On the result...
I think it's a very good result against a very good team. I think Seattle is well coached and well organized. They have players with a lot of experience. Tonight I think we got on top of the game early found a way to get the second and then, there were some tense moments though there, but I think all of this is about - and I said it last week - developing that psychological immunity. You don't get nervous when you're in those positions, you find ways to find add the third. For me, again, it's a long process, it's a long season, but I'm really satisfied with the way we've started.
On getting results despite all of the injuries...
I think it has a lot to do with the way we approached the preseason this year. It's about all of the players and not focusing on just eleven. Knowing that there's no way that you're going to go from March to December with eleven players. So making sure that everyone understands roles and responsibilities. More importantly that everyone has the right mentality and mindset to step in and make a difference. Tonight I think losing Burch before the game, you could've made excuses. Losing Eric Miller halfway through the second half, you could've made excuses, but the guys that go in there do a great job. I think that epitomizes team, that epitomizes everything that I believe in this game and it epitomizes the type of characters in that locker room. I think those guys find ways to win games and the group is becoming stronger with every performance.
On why the past two games have been tense towards the end...
They're throwing more bodies forward. They don't start the game throwing five guys up top because they're not willing to risk it. I think when you have nothing to lose, the mentality changes. So now we're facing a wounded animal who's willing to die in the process. So what's important for me is a mentality to find a way to strike again, and in the last three games we found ways to do that. Tonight is no different and we will continue to talk about the things. Every game is its own performance. You can't dictate for 90 minutes the way that you want to play. But it's understanding the moments where you have momentum and making the best of those situations and then understanding that the other team has professional athletes as well and they're going to do a decent job, and you have to find ways to absorb the pressure. It's a work in progress, but I think the guys are responding really, really well and I really believe that we have a very good team.
On Jermaine Jones' importance...
Jermaine's reputation as a player precedes him. He's a class footballer. I think what a lot of people don't understand about the individual is that he's a leader and he doesn't do it with a voice, it's actions. For me, there's nothing more powerful in life than to follow someone who is willing to do what he does and risk everything that he has. Every training session, he tackles as if it were a game. He goes through the shooting exercises as if it were a game. He's no nonsense. He trains with that mentality, he plays with that mentality, and what he does is he drives our team on. He drives us on with his mentality, with the way that he holds the ball up, with the way that he brings players into the game, with the way he scores goals, with the way he defends the balls. He does it all. He's a real leader, an important piece of what we're trying to do moving forward. I think he's got a great career here in Colorado, and I think these two games exemplify the type of impact that a player of this magnitude can have.
On his attitude at practice...
As a coach, there's a lot to like about it. The old cliché is train the way you play. It's old school, but it's the truth. I don't know how to explain it. I go out to training and I'm in awe that these player still exist. 95% of those guys have the same type of mentality and I think it's because it is a team effort and they have to have it. For a guy who has achieved as much as he has in his career, to still have that drive to get better as a player, want to get better as a player, want to win something, want to stay in Colorado for the long haul, I think it's a very powerful message that it sends to the rest of the group.
On Castillo's debut and Doyle's return...
I thin, they're fantastic because what you want from players who are coming into the game are is to impact the game in a positive way. Castillo has had zero professional experience but is another player who leaves it all out in the field during training through the week. So his performance wasn't surprising to me, it was more of the same. This year we've done a good job as an organization to bring in character people. Guys that you know you can rely on and trust, and Castillo's performance was worthy of that. He came in, defended well and I think the cherry on top was the delivery to Kev[in Doyle]. I had my reservations playing Kev this week because I thought, ‘I don't know if he's ready.' So I had a good conversation with him and he said, ‘No, I need to be a part of the team and ready to go.' As a manager, you want the players to believe that they're ready. I was a good listener and Kevin will always give you 100%. He made some great runs, he held the ball up well and the cherry on top for his performance was a fantastic finish. The run across the front of the goal like that and being opportunistic is where Kevin has made a career. It was great to see him out for so long with a crazy injury to come back and inject the group with that type of performance and energy was fantastic.
On the tactic going in to the game...
The tactic going in was to give them the ball and leave a little space to exploit. The tactic was to allow them to play from the back and not force them to kick it and I think we did a very good job of that. Possession is only a relevant stat when you do something with it. Last year we had a lot of games where we had 70%, 60% and we found ourselves on the wrong side of the scoreboard. What we don't want is an up and down game. We want to control and dictate where they keep their possession. Bobby [Burling] and the back four, the guys in the middle and Zac [MacMath] did a fantastic job of minimizing quality opportunities. That has a lot do with the organization in front of them, but whenever there was a fire to put out I think they did a fantastic job of dealing with it and putting it out.
Midfielder Jermaine Jones - Colorado Rapids
On beating the Sounders 3-1...
I would say that for both teams, the first half was a little tough. But I think we came good with set pieces. I got a goal and then I'd say we had almost three other good chances that could've gone in. We trained that way the whole week and wanted to be in set pieces and dangerous.
On working so well with Gashi throughout the game...
I think [Marco] Pappa before was the same. He hit all the set pieces good, too. Of course we've trained on set pieces the day before the game, but nothing special between me and him.
On what has made the Rapids start clicking and flexing their muscles...
To believe. I think thats' the biggest point. It's what I've always said, you have to look game to game, and if you give every gameâespecially at homeâ100 percent, than it's tough for people to come here and beat you. You can see it: Toronto, Seattle, L.A., all the big teams come here and they struggle. And we don't just win by one goal, we win clearly. And I think that's good for the whole team.
On expectations coming to the Rapids and putting his stamp on the game with two goals in two games...
You know, it's not only this team. I was already in New England and when I came to New England I said there that I will show the league and I can make a difference on the team. And people were laughing a little bit in the beginning. Maybe I'm the last piece of the puzzle that can bring the team back to the playoffs. And I've always said that it's not only the games, it's in the training. When I step in training I want to win all of my games. I don't care if it's training or it's a game, and I think that's the key.
On what his t-shirt said when he pulled up his jersey following his goal...
Today was the birthday of my twin boys, my superheroes. They were sitting at home watching the game. And I was sure I'd get the second one too, so I wanted to get both of them. But Gashi wanted it and you know how it is when you step on and you take the penalty, you have to score it. If not, you'll be in the back, back, back of the rankings.
On whether he'll take the next penalty kick...
Definitely, yes. I was feeling good today, and I was feeling comfortable to take it, but he wanted to take it. It happened. We won the game, so it's done, it's finished. The next one, I step on.
On playing with an edge even though he's already picked up one yellow card...
Yeah, it's difficult. I've said it before that I want to change my game, not my whole game, but I don't want to be the one who always goes crazy. I think you can see it already in these two games that I try to have fun. Of course, if you come too late in a tackle, I told the referee that I didn't want to go hard on him and I came too late, and he said it's all good that it wasn't a bad foul. So we go from there.