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Sounders at Chivas, recap: Champions League ends in whimper

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Will Bruin and Chad Marshall both left early with head injuries.

Chivas v Seattle Sounders - CONCACAF Champions League 2018
Everything is awful
Photo by Refugio Ruiz/Getty Images

There are times when a 3-1 aggregate goal loss to a team in Mexico would feel alright for an MLS side. This is not one of those times. Seattle Sounders FC entered the match with a 1-nil lead. Their brethren dispatched Tijuana and Tigres last night. Chivas Guadalajara thumped the Sounders on the head, took their money and laughed.

The 3-nil scoreline may have minimized just how overwhelmed the Sounders were. Chivas, for their part, made sure to take advantage of Seattle’s mistakes. They gave no quarter, and took all names, and easily could have had more. With the opportunity to advance to the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals for their second time, the Sounders will instead come out of it focused on MLS play, for their CCL ride is over.

Key Moments

Injuries Suck.

Yes, the Sounders didn’t have their full complement of players. Yes, it sucked to lose Will Bruin to head injury in the 8th minute. Yes, it sucked to lose Chad Marshall in the 35th minute. Both may be out for some time. This blows. Seattle is already without Alonso, Morris and Rodriguez. The timeline to add new talent may have just moved up, again.

Once Guadalajara scored it was over.

Oswaldo Alanís’ free kick was as good as can be scored. It’s placement and pace was perfect. Stefan Frei could do nothing to stop it. From there the weary, injured Seattle squad was done, even if the aggregate goal was not out of reach. Leg two was over. Chivas was clearly the better team.

Talking Points

2 Good

  • Kim Kee-Hee earned his first minutes as a Sounder. The centerback played 55 minutes of serviceable soccer, even if it was clear that he and Torres had not played together much.
  • Kelvin Leerdam is healthy again.

Everything else is capital B Bad

  • You still have to play like champions. Schmetzer’s team earned their appearance in the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League by winning the 2016 MLS Cup. They did that by being huge underdogs and bunkering. It was a valid tactic that at the time that earned the result in their most important match in history. Tonight they did not bunker. They didn’t really do anything. A 56% pass completion rate is something that an amateur team can do in the Open Cup. It’s what the Sounders did against Chivas. Chivas completed 75% of their passes in their final third.
  • Both Francis and McCrary looked overwhelmed. Outside of one great skill move by Francis the two fullbacks looked every bit of replacement level.
  • The spine was broken. Outside of a single brilliant moment from Clint Dempsey the forwards, central midfielders and center backs also played poorly. But at least there was this dreamy attempt from Clint.

Lineup

Frei; Francis, Marshall, Torres, McCrary; Svensson, Roldan; Wolff, Dempsey, Wingo; Bruin

8’ Bruin off. Neagle on

35’ Marhall off. Kim on.

81’ Wingo off. Leerdam on.

Goals

50’ Oswaldo Alanís

55’ Javier López (Rodolfo Pizarro)

80’ José de Jesús Godínez (Isaác Brizuela)

Man of Match Poll

No. There is no poll.