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Clint Dempsey not starting vs. Timbers

This would have been his third game in eight days.

PORTLAND, Ore. — For one of the few times this year, the Seattle Sounders are using very close to their A-lineup ... with one very notable exception. Clint Dempsey will begin the match on the bench, with Cristian Roldan moving into the No. 10 role.

This would have been Dempsey’s third start in eight days, something he’s not yet done since missing most of the second half of last season with heart issues. A team spokesperson also said Dempsey was very likely to feature in the second half. The Sounders have won five straight games and have only lost once in MLS play against the Timbers in matches Dempsey has featured.

Although Roldan has never started as 10 in MLS play, he did play that role in college and many assumed he’d play there in the pros. That decision also allowed Brian Schmetzer to keep Gustav Svensson in the lineup, moving him from center back to defensive midfielder.