Despite having another full friendly tonight against Sacramento Republic, Seattle Sounders FC played a closed-door match against USL squad Reno 1868 FC. The starting lineup was mostly comprised of S2 players and reserves, but potential starters like Clint Dempsey, Will Bruin, and Magnus Wolff Eikrem were also in the XI.
Your Starting XI this morning vs. Reno 1868 FC (4-4-2 diamond):— Sounders Matchday (@LIVESounders) February 15, 2018
Roldan (Alex version)
SUBS:— Sounders Matchday (@LIVESounders) February 15, 2018
The match apparently started brightly for Seattle, with Eikrem and Nouhou seeing action early on. Dempsey took one of the Sounders’ first dangerous shots, but it was deflected away. Rookie Handwalla Bwana also had a shot saved in the first half, and Bruin nearly latched onto a through ball from Eikrem.
But despite what appeared to be early dominance by the Sounders, some sloppy defending allowed the USL side to strike first in the 34th minute.
34' - Goal Reno. Ball isn't cleared from the area in front of goal, and a Reno player manages to poke a shot past an outstretched Meredith.— Sounders Matchday (@LIVESounders) February 15, 2018
The first half ended with Reno still up 1-0, and the Sounders only brought on one substitute, Zach Mathers for Ulysse, before the second half. The action seemed fairly equal between the sides, and Reno had the first big chance when a shot pinged off Meredith’s crossbar and saved the Sounders from going down by another goal.
Dempsey came off in the 65th minute for Academy player Dylan Teves; Bwana and Ray Saari also came off later in the half. The most notable reported highlight for Seattle was a storming run by Nouhou down the left side that culminated in a shot by the left-back, but it flew wide.
Not that it’s much to be too concerned about at the moment, it’s still unfortunate to see the Sounders fall to a lower-division side. About half of the starting XI are signed to the first team, and at least four are essentially starters for the club at the moment. We should get a chance to see the rest of the first team players in action this evening against Sacramento.