With their cathartic and timely 2-0 victory, the Seattle Sounders enter the international break in a less-dire position than before. The performance gives the players (not to mention the fans) something positive to think about as the team returns to health and resets for the rest of the season.
Seattle's young and homegrown players shone again in this match, with Jordan Morris, Joevin Jones, Aaron Kovar and Cristian Roldan providing danger going forward and putting in strong shifts to maintain a shutout. Roldan noted the team is proud of their "team effort" and praised his teammates' play.
The win puts the Sounders at 5-7-1 with a -2 goal difference, holding their spot at ninth in the Western Conference entering the break.
Seattle Sounders FC 2 - D.C. United 0
Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Venue: RFK Stadium
Referee: Jose Carlos Rivero
Assistants: Matthew S. Nelson, Jose J. Da Silva
Fourth Official: Sorin Stoica
Weather: Cloudy and 78 degrees
SEA - Jordan Morris 79'
SEA - Joevin Jones (Osvaldo Alonso) 83'
SEA - Andreas Ivanschitz (caution) 38'
SEA - Aaron Kovar (caution) 64'
DC - Fabian Espindola (caution) 73'
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Tyrone Mears, Zach Scott (Tony Alfaro 40'), Brad Evans - captain, Dylan Remick; Osvaldo Alonso, Cristian Roldan, Erik Friberg; Aaron Kovar (Herculez Gomez 86'), Jordan Morris, Andreas Ivanschitz (Joevin Jones 74')
Substitutes not used: Tyler Miller, Oniel Fisher, Nathan Sturgis, Darwin Jones
Total shots: 14 (Morris, 4)
Shots on goal: 8 (Morris, 4)
Fouls: 10 (Four players, 2)
Offside: 3 (Morris, 2)
Saves: 1 (Frei, 1)
D.C. United - Bill Hamid; Sean Franklin, Kofi Opare, Bobby Boswell, Taylor Kemp; Lamar Neagle (Miguel Aguilar 65'), Jared Jeffrey, Marcelo Sarvas, Nick DeLeon (Alhaji Kamara 81'); Luciano Costa (Julian Buescher 71'), Fabian Espindola
Substitutes not used: Travis Wora, Jalen Robinson, Luke Mishu, Rob Vincent
Total shots: 15 (Neagle, 5)
Shots on goal: 1 (Espindola, 1)
Fouls: 13 (Acosta/Franklin, 4)
Offside: 2 (Espindola/Opare, 1)
Corner-kicks: 4 (Espindola, 4)
Saves: 6 (Hamid, 6)
Seattle Sounders FC Head Coach Sigi Schmid
On the outcome of the game...
"Obviously we're happy with the result. I thought we started off the game fairly well, but then there was a period of time in the first half where United took the game to us for about 15-20 minutes. But then I thought we got ahold of the game again towards the end of the first half. Second half, I thought we had more of a game overall. We did a good job of possession of the ball and getting forward and getting chances."
On if he planned on using Joevin Jones...
"We had Joevin, and we knew we could bring him on at left-back, or maybe we felt that we would bring him on in left-wing, we'll see how the game goes."
On how big of a win this is...
"What's important about the win is just for our guys...There's been games where we've played really well and came away with nothing. It's important for our guys to understand and believe in what we're doing. So, getting a win like that for them tonight substantiates that. That what we're doing is right, that how we're playing is right. It's just a matter of the chances going into the net first."
On the pregame message...
"The message was simple. It was a very short pregame talk. I said that there's no better feeling than working together, working hard, and coming away with success. That was the whole pregame talk."
On the status of Zach Scott:
"Felt it sort of grab...He doesn't think it's pulled. But obviously he gets a little bit of a break now, so we'll see."
On Tony Alfaro's solid appearance...
"I mean, you've got to take your hat off to him. He's had to come in twice. Once, for Evans and once for Zach. For a rookie playing his first two games, he plays with some pretty good composure."
On the back four with Remick, Alfaro...
"As I said, D.C. had some chances. Neagle was getting some opportunities coming from the right, but I thought in the second half, before they took Neagle out, that Remmy really got ahold of him. So that was important. I thought Tyrone had a good game. Acosta gave us some problems because he was popping up in different places, but again, for us the back four was solid."
Seattle Sounders Midfielder Cristian Roldan
On the overall mood in the locker room after the win...
"It's good. It's a relief off of our shoulders and it was a good road win. Defensively, we all worked. Offensively, we all tried our best. It was a team effort today and we're very proud of it."
On Osvaldo Alonso's performance...
"We pushed our two midfielders a little bit higher; myself and [Erik] Friberg. Ozzy [Alonso] is more than capable of just surveying the field from there and I thought he was really big for us, to me, the man of the match for sure."
On Joevin Jones' performance...
"He definitely changed the game for us. I thought Joevin [Jones] played well. He was explosive, something that we lacked, and he had a little bit of fresh legs and I thought he was good for us and we need that; we need little bits of that on the road and we're excited to get the win."
On Tony Alfaro...
"Tony is a good player. I don't think people realize how good he is. They underestimate him and it's good that he comes in and no one knows about him because people may not know he's a lefty, a good passer and if they give him a little bit of space then he is going to take advantage of it."
On getting an important three points on the road...
"We probably didn't have as many chances as them. To be fair, it was probably a 0-0 game. It probably should have stayed like that, but we took advantage of our two opportunities and we go home with a win."
On having positive reinforcements this week...
"Yeah, we definitely needed a break, especially with the guys who are missing right now; our DP players. It's overall a good performance and you see the starting lineup and it's younger than last year. We just hope to build on this win and keep going."
D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid
On if there was a reason for loss...
"I'm not sure. It think we have to watch the game back over and see where we went wrong. I think we had a lot of chances to put them away from the first half and it was just a little bit unlucky. So once we watch the game back and see where we went wrong and where we fell apart, we'll have a better idea."
On if he had confidence going into the second half against Morris...
"Morris ended up in the right place at the right time for his goal and that happens. Other than that he didn't really danger us whatsoever. We knew what he's capable of, we had a game plan against him like we do with all other forwards and Bobby [Boswell] and Kofi [Opare] handled him quite well. We weren't really worried about him, it was just unlucky that the ball ended up at his feet at the top of the six and he put it away."
On if this affects mentality going into the break...
"I think it's going to affect us mentally a little bit but we have to put it away. It's unfortunate that we don't have a game for a little while to make up for it but that happens. You win some, you lose some. You learn from the losses, you learn from the wins and you keep on moving forward."
D.C. United defender Kofi Opare
On his thoughts on the handball...
"Inititally I thought I scored...somehow it just didn't go in. You know, that's soccer. The game is different...you know, if I score that header, maybe the game would have been different, but obviously that's not the case. I think we should have found a way to see the game through...if not three at least one point. It's so subjective...what's a handball, what's not a handball, just like Ben said. It happens in a split second and from my vantage point I couldn't really tell if it was a handball or not. I haven't seen the replay and for a referee it's hard, he has a split second to make a decision."