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Seattle Sounders vs. Columbus Crew: Highlights, stats and quotes

“The few times that they did get into our end of the field and we won possession of the ball, we need to sprint. We need to get down the field before they get a chance to get bunkered in.” -Brian Schmetzer

Match Data


Seattle Sounders FC 0 - Columbus Crew SC 0

Sunday, May 5, 2018

Venue: Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field

Referee: Hilario Grajeda

Assistants: Jonathan Johnson, Eduardo Mariscal

Fourth Official: Alejandro Mariscal

VAR: Rosendo Mendoza

Attendance: 39,515

Weather: Clear and 64 degrees




CLB - Pedro Santos (ejection) 15’

SEA - Osvaldo Alonso (caution) 30’

CLB - Wil Trapp (caution) 54’


Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Kelvin Leerdam, Chad Marshall (Handwalla Bwana HT), Kim Kee-hee, Nouhou (Henry Wingo 76’); Osvaldo Alonso - captain, Gustav Svensson, Cristian Roldan, Clint Dempsey, Alex Roldan (Magnus Wolff Eikrem 63’); Will Bruin

Substitutes not used: Bryan Meredith, Jordy Delem, Lamar Neagle, Jordan McCrary

Total shots: 17 (Dempsey, 6)

Shots on goal: 1 (Dempsey, 1)

Fouls: 10 (Kim, 3)

Offside: 0

Corner-kicks: 5 (C. Roldan, 3)

Saves: 2 (Frei, 2)

Columbus Crew SC - Zach Steffen; Milton Valenzuela, Lalas Abubakar, Josh Williams, Hector Jimenez; Wil Trapp - captain, Ricardo Clark (Mohammed Abu 66’), Federico Higuain, Pedro Santos, Cristian Martinez (Alex Crognale 31’); Gyasi Zardes (Adam Jahn 78’)

Substitutes not used: Jon Kempin, Mohammed Abu, Mike Grella, Luis Argudo, Connor Maloney

Total shots: 5 (Zardes, 2)

Shots on goal: 2 (Jimenez/Zardes, 1)

Fouls: 10 (Zardes, 3)

Offside: 0

Corner-kicks: 0

Saves: 1 (Steffen, 1)

Post-Match Quotes


On Nicolas Lodeiro’s absence:

“He’s got a foot injury, and we were hoping he would play. But, we decided that he wasn’t going to be able to play. We are going to continue to evaluate him because he’s an important player for our club. And we’ll just take it game by game. There’s a possibility for Wednesday. There’s a possibility for Saturday. We’ll just continue to evaluate him.”

On the difficulty of breaking down a team that’s bunkered in:

“We pulled [Chad] Marshall off at half time to bring Handwalla [Bwana] on and put him out wide to see if he could break guys down 1v1. You know, Nouhou on that side and Handwalla, two fast, young, aggressive guys. With the next sub, we tried to go to three at the back and push another guy up. The swap for Magnus [Wolff Eikrem] for Alex [Roldan] was just a straight swap. When Henry [Wingo] came on we just played three at the back. It was just a combination of trying to get guys out in the wide channels to stretch them a little wider to create some gaps inside for Clint [Dempsey], or [Will] Bruin, or Magnus. But, you’ve got to credit the Crew. They did a good job of shutting us down.”

On the club’s dialogue with Lodeiro and his willingness to play:

“He’s got a significant foot injury. And when the player has a significant injury, it’s his call. Nico has been a very, very positive influence for us in the club. So, we’re sad that he isn’t playing. But, like I said, we’re going to continue to evaluate him, and try to make good decisions for this club.”

On the most frustrating aspect of the draw:

“We’re disappointed in the result. It’s not good enough. I’ll make sure that we watch this tape, and that we work on attacking movements to try and break that final line and be a little bit more creative. And we moved the ball too slow. The few times that they did get into our end of the field and we won possession of the ball, we need to sprint. We need to get down the field before they get a chance to get bunkered in. So, we’ll look at that. And the coaching staff will train that to make sure we create more opportunities -- more good opportunities, I should say. What I told them at halftime is sometimes when you go down to 10 men, you play with less pressure because everyone expects you to lose. For the team with 11, it actually becomes challenging because they try to force things in, or they’re in a hurry, or they panic a little bit. I’m not sure that our club made some good decisions in that final third. And what I mean by that is sometimes it’s just the movement to create the space. We had [45] crosses, which is not normal for us. Some of the movements off the ball we’ll address, and we’ll get it better.”

On only having one shot on goal:

“It’s particularly frustrating. I think we’re better than that. I think that the fact that we had to resort to just pumping [45] balls into the box from wide channels is not indicative of the play we’re capable of.”


On the game:

“We were too slow, we moved it too slow, we were too predicatable. We just didin’t even try to play through the final third, I think everyone in the stadium knew we were gonna get it and try to cross it, you’ve got to find other ways to create chances, and we just haven’t been able to do it.”

On how to get out of the routine of pushing it wide and crossing:

“We’ve got to be willing to take chances, get some creativity, some flair, we’ve got to pass and move, we’ve got to try things, we are too caught up with playing the simple pass, ‘I’m not going to make the mistake and move it to the next guy.’ You aren’t going to score like that, it’s too easy to defend. It was a prime example tonight.”

On how to get a better result in Toronto:

“We need to find a solution to this. If you can’t tell I’m pretty frustrated right now. We are going to look at film tomorrow and I hope we look at ways to exploit Toronto and ways we can attack them…Yeah I hope we can generate some goals.”


On what Columbus did well:

“Well they had a gameplan. You know going down to ten men they knew exactly what they were going to do. They hit us on the counter three, four times. Fortunate to not go down two-, three-zero. I thought they were extremely well organized, they were good.”

On the red card play:

“Obviously it’s a tough call, because it is on accident. At the end of the day his foot was up fairly high, even if it’s an accident even if it’s a red card.”

On being more creative:

“I think lets give Columbus a lot of credit. They really forced us to play the ball out wide and forced us to cross it all times. It felt like there was no space in the middle and we couldn’t capitilize on the times where there were space. They came out and did extremely well.”


On what Columbus did to frustrate Seattle’s offense:

“Yeah, really disappointing. When we are home we have to find a way to win, and we didn’t. They packed the middle and we couldn’t find the space to score goals, but now we have to focus on Toronto.”

On the mentality of the team after the red card:

“When you have a man up you’re always like, ‘You have to take advantage, we have to score a goal to win the game.’ But we couldn’t find the back of the net. Now we have to prepare for Toronto.”

On being more creative:

“You have to try to be more quick with the ball and find the middle of the field more quick. Pass the ball and try to find the forward. We played good defense and we tried to score and it didn’t happen.”


On how to get a better result:

“You need to move the ball quicker, they got bigger chances than we did, that’s something that we need to look at, we need to create more chances. Clint [Dempsey] had one chance in the second half and that’s not enough. We are in a difficult spot but we need to be positive and we have a game I think Wednesday and we need to move forward.”

On the positivity of the team:

“I think you need to be positive in every situation. I know it’s tough for us and tough for the fans and tough for everyone in the sporting world day in and day out. It’s what we have to do tomorrow again and you got to work hard and hopefully the next game brings us three points.”

On the attack being too predictable:

“Today we just didn’t move the ball quick enough and that is the main reason we couldn’t create enough chances for the guys. I think if we move it a little quicker they will break, it will happen.”


On playing a man down for the majority of the match:

“I’m proud of the guys. I think it was an outstanding effort. The way we organized ourselves, defended and stayed disciplined with the defending was excellent. Under difficult conditions, on turf, pretty warm, down a man – I think the guys did a great job.”

On the key to staying organized in the back:

“Movement. We needed to continue to slide, defend as a unit and continue to be a solid block that was difficult to break down, and I think we did that. We opened up very little passing lanes through the middle so everything had to go wide. Then when we were wide, we had numbers in the penalty box to defend it.”

On Josh Williams and Lalas Abubakar playing together:

“We knew it was going to be a week where we rely on the squad. We’re going to have to rotate players throughout the course of this week and I think they did well. I think all of the players that started who had relatively few minutes this season did a good job today.”

On if subbing out Cristian Martinez early was injury related:

“No, he’s fine. That was tactical.”

On preparing for the next two matches at home and with Pedro Santos missing the next one:

“We’ll try to regroup and get our guys together and fit. We rested a number of guys today so we’ll have some fresh guys. We’ll be able to get some fresh bodies on the field for Wednesday.”


On playing on the road and with 10 men for most of the match:

“I mean, what the guys did out there is spectacular. The way they grinded, and just ran for 75 minutes and battled. We were so compact and connected. We talked before the game about being a wolfpack and that is exactly what we showcased.”

On the back line and the team’s organization:

“It was huge, I mean, we had to shift a lot. They like to play the balls out wide to make a shift and cross the ball in. So we had to, our outside backs had to do a lot of running, our center backs had to do a lot of running and our midfielders had to do a lot of running to get pressure out there. To be down a man…and away against Seattle…is really tough, so I am really, really proud with how the guys played today.”

On his first shutout since week three:

“It feels good. It feels so good…It goes to show how much work the guys in front of me did for 75 minutes.”


On the amount of running in the game:

“Exhausted. It is never easy, but we showed a lot of character. This point is going to go a long way in our season.”

On the team’s focus after being a man down:

“Determination. To be honest with you I think we had the clearest chances after we went a man down. We were just unfortunate to not get a goal. We fought like dogs out there. I am just really proud with everyone and this scenario.”

On if his role changed after the red card:

“Not much. It changed for everyone. We had to sit a little bit further back but we just defended like dogs, and sometimes you know that is the way the game goes and you just have to adapt and I think we did very well.”

On shifting the focus to the next two conference matches:

“These conference games are always six point swings, so we are just going to take our time to look at Philadelphia and Chicago and prepare as best we can.”

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