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Will Bruin thinks Sounders should try playing more direct against Chicago

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The forward thinks the occasional ball over the top will stretch defenses

Max Aquino / Sounder at Heart

With a league-fewest 10 goals for and as the only club in MLS averaging fewer than a goal per match, the Seattle Sounders are in need of an offensive spark. Going into a match against a fatigued Chicago Fire team that went 90 minutes on the road against Atlanta United Wednesday, Sounders forward Will Bruin thinks the right move for Seattle will be to go right at Chicago.

“I think we need to get the ball wider quicker,” Bruin said at training Thursday. “We sometimes just need to play direct and send the ball over the top to make the defense respect it instead of just trying to play through the middle. If you play through the middle all the time, they can step up and tighten space and press. If we can get the ball in out wide, spread the field and whip some crosses in then we can play through the middle more. “

“I think sometimes right now we’re a little bit too predictable about trying to combine through middle and get out, wanting it to look pretty. I think sometimes it’s just as effective to send the ball over the top and kind of play route one and then the defense will give you more space to play through the middle. It’s just something we need to get back to the basics of doing and once we put some in the back of the net we’ll get our mojo going.”

Bruin leads the team with three league goals through 13 matches. The forward missed two matches recently due to a partially-torn plantar fascia but said Thursday that he was almost back to 100 percent fitness.

As for Bruin’s thoughts on the attacking end of the pitch, the final say will rest with head coach Brian Schmetzer, but pressure is mounting on the Sounders to produce more positive results at home like June 9’s 2-1 win over D.C. United.

“Tomorrow we’ll focus on attacking movements in the final third,” Schmetzer said Thursday. “We’ll focus on the basics. We’ll try to get them out there and in the right spots. Hopefully we’ll score a few goals at home.”