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Sounders International roundup: Good work if you can get it

Xavier Arreaga helped guide Ecuador to a big win over Uruguay.

Ecuador v Uruguay - South American Qualifiers for Qatar 2022 Photo by Jose Jacome - Pool/Getty Images

The three Seattle Sounders players away on national team duty had games on Tuesday and Wednesday, but only Xavier Arreaga saw the field. Coincidentally, Arreaga’s Ecuador side were the only one of the three teams to earn a result.

Arreaga started and played the full 90 minutes as Ecuador topped Uruguay 4-2 in their second World Cup Qualifying match ahead of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Ecuador took a 4-0 lead into the final 10 minutes of the game before two Luis Suárez goals from penalties in the 84th and 95th minutes halved the deficit.

As was the case with the penalty in Ecuador’s first game, Arreaga likely could have prevented the first penalty with a better defensive play, but wasn’t directly at fault. The same couldn’t be said of the second penalty, though, as he committed a clear hand ball as he attempted to defend a set piece late in stoppage time.

Sweden played two UEFA Nations League matches since we last checked in on Gustav Svensson’s international performance, although Svensson didn’t play in either. During the first, a 2-1 loss to Croatia on Oct. 11, Svensson was unavailable as he served his suspension from receiving a red card in a Nations League match against Portugal during the previous international window. Sweden played Portugal once again on Wednesday but Svensson didn’t leave the bench as his side lost 3-0. That result leaves Sweden in last place in Group 3 of League A with four losses through four games. In the final two games of this stage of the competition they’ll play each of Croatia and France once, and will likely need to get results in both matches if they want any chance of passing Croatia in their group and avoid being relegated to League B.

Raúl Ruidíaz wasn’t involved in Peru’s 4-2 loss to Brazil, having tested positive for COVID-19. Peru’s loss coupled with their draw against Paraguay in the first game during this window dropped them to last place in CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifying. There are still 14 games remaining between now and the end of qualifying in early 2022 for them to climb their way back up and earn a return trip to the World Cup.

All three will be headed back soon, although Ruidíaz still has some time in quarantine before he can return to the US. Svensson and Arreaga should just have their mandatory quarantines upon returning to the States standing between them and their return to the Sounders as they head into the season’s home stretch. All three players could be eligible to return to play in time for the Oct. 27 match againt the Portland Timbers.