FULLTIME: The Sounders earned some of their defensive swagger back with a half-gritty, half-classy one-nil win. Though lucky not to concede on a few golden chances for Houston around the 80th minute, the team’s overall work rate and organization in the back shined against a potent visiting attack. Maintaining 60 percent possession through the final 55 minutes helped preserve the clean sheet as well.
The Sounders had cruised through the second half until Elis got behind their backline in the 79th. The well waited ball from Darwin Cerin put Frei in a tough spot, but the veteran goalkeeper came off his line with perfect timing to smother the ball. Just two minutes later Tommy McNamara missed a sitter from the penalty spot. Nervy moments for the Sounders.
Just over a minute into the second half, Shipp put on his best Rodriguez impression, cutting the ball to his right foot and curling a shot to the far post. Only a great save from Joe Willis kept the ball from the back of the net.
Harry Shipp shakes his defender and forces Joe Willis to make a save. pic.twitter.com/kVMAsMsXVY— Sounder At Heart (@sounderatheart) May 12, 2019
HALFTIME: The Sounders went into the half up 1-0, but both teams could have, perhaps should have, scored multiple goals in the first 45. The two teams combined for 16 shots.
Seven of those shots came in the chaotic final 10 minutes of the half, and while the Sounders created more chances in that time (most notably nearly scoring off a Lodeiro rocket that careened off the post), it was the Dynamo who missed the clearest chance. Mauro Manotas, a usually lethal finisher, skied his shot over the crossbar after finding himself one on one with Stefan Frei in the penalty box.
Not really sure how Manotas missed this one. Still 1-0 as the half time whistle blows. pic.twitter.com/NW3CHY9d4g— Sounder At Heart (@sounderatheart) May 12, 2019
Alberth Elis nearly tied the game after Sounders blew their marking in the 25th minute defending a Adam Lundkvist free kick. Elis seemed to give Kelvin Leerdam the slip en route to finding himself wide open in the six yard box. The Dynamo winger should’ve converted the chance, but headed the ball into the turf so hard that it cleared the cross bar on the bounce. Sounders lucky to conserve the lead.
Elis misses a golden opportunity. pic.twitter.com/461jKQe7rw— Sounder At Heart (@sounderatheart) May 12, 2019
SOUNDERS 1, DYNAMO 0: Cristian Roldan scored his second screamer in as many matches after taking a Dynamo’s corner clearance down with his chest and striking the ball on the half-volley from outside of the box. Who created combination play that led to corner in the first place? Brad Smith, Nico Lodeiro, and Victor Rodriguez of course.
Roldan scores in the 5th minute. Pick that out, son! 1-0 Seattle pic.twitter.com/KZPIqSe5hd— Sounder At Heart (@sounderatheart) May 12, 2019
LINEUPS: Chad Marshall is out of the lineup once again with right knee inflammation. That means Roman Torres will slot into the right center back role while Kim Kee-hee will slide over to the left center back position. The duo will look to recreate their lockdown performance from the second match against LAFC. They’ll have their work cut out for them against Mauro Manotas, Memo Rodriguez, Mauro Manotas, and Alberth Elis, one of the best attacking fours in MLS. In the midfield, Jordy Delem is in once again for Gustav Svensson who’s out with right knee inflammation for the second straight match. On the plus side, Raul Ruidiaz is back in the starting 11, reuniting the Sounders own fearsome front four of Ruidiaz, Nicolas Lodeiro, Victor Rodriguez, and Jordan Morris.
The Dynamo are off to a blazing start this season, coming out of the gates with a 6-1-1 record. The Sounders haven’t won in four matches, drawing three straight.
Absences: Injury, international duty and suspension
OUT: M - Gustav Svensson (left hamstring strain)
QUESTIONABLE: D - Chad Marshall (right knee inflammation)
OUT: M - Eric Bird (left ankle injury)
OUT: D - DaMarcus Beasley (left knee surgery 3/20, out 4-6 weeks)
OUT: F - Ronaldo Peña (left knee injury)
OUT: M - Marlon Hairston (right hip injury)
REF: Alex Chilowicz
AR1: Eduardo Mariscal
AR2: Chris Elliott
4TH: Elvis Osmanovic
VAR: Alejandro Mariscal
AVAR: Joshua Patlak
List referee team focusing on CR and VAR
Keys to the Game:
- The Dynamo are very bad on the road. Dating back to 2017, they only have 3 road wins. That’s it. While they’ve been off to an incredible start to their season, they’ve played 6 of 8 at home. Oh, and also, they’ve never won in Seattle. Ever.
- The Sounders are finally healthy, for the most part. They will need a big game from Jordy Delem, however. Seattle really misses Gustav Svensson’s ability to switch the point of attack quickly.
How to Watch
Match date/time: May 11th @ 7:00pm
Venue: CenturyLink Field
Online Streaming: YouTube TV, ESPN+, Fubo TV (affiliate link)
Local English TV: JOEtv (Costigan, Keller, Zakuani)
Local Radio: 950 KJR-AM Seattle (Johnson, Webber)
Local Spanish Radio: El Rey 1360 AM (Rodriguez, Maqueda, Tapia)
Local Spanish TV: KUNS-TV Univision-Seattle
Highlights will be posted as the match progresses.
This is Seattle Sounders vs the Houston Dynamo; watch with us