There is no number in soccer that makes one think of goalscoring as much as the 9 shirt. It is the number of the striker, the forward. With the Seattle Sounders it was a number made famous by Obafemi Martins. Now, it is the number of Ruidiaz.
Wearing the 9, Martins scored 40 MLS goals and 3 more in the US Open Cup. He is the only prolific MLS Sounder to wear the shirt. Martins won an Open Cup, Supporters’ Shield, Best XI, Goal of the Year and All Star recognition with Seattle.
Most recently Herculez Gomez wore the number while scoring his single all-competitions goal and winning the MLS Cup in 2016.
Peter Vagenas is the only Seattle midfielder to wear the 9. He scored zero goals while doing so. He won two Open Cups in Seattle, but only one while wearing the 9 shirt.
The first MLS Sounder to wear the 9 was midfielder/forward Sebastian Le Toux. Le Toux recently retired from an MLS career that spanned seven teams. In 2009 he won a US Open Cup with Seattle and was co-leader with 3 goals scored in that tournament.
Ruidiaz is here to win trophies like every other 9, while scoring like Oba.