The kids can be trusted
It was kind of Major League Soccer to allow the Sounders to reschedule their match last weekend because of Concacaf Champions League, but there’s no such luck this week. Every ounce of rest the Sounders gained from not having to play last weekend was used up midweek against NYCFC. It is a reasonable to expect the Sounders to rotate heavily tonight against Inter Miami.
The question then is does Brian Schmetzer rotate with veterans or with kids? I suspect we’ll see a bit of both in the starting lineup. Obed Vargas and Jackson Ragen are almost guaranteed to start, and maybe we’ll see Leo Chu on the wing. One wild card to look out for is that apparently Reed Baker-Whiting came back early from the GA Cup.
Picking up steam
There’s always a lot made about how MLS teams in CCL have early regular season struggles. The prevailing narrative is that the Sounders have made sacrifices in MLS play to achieve what they’ve achieved in CCL, but that’s not totally true. Yes, the Sounders did lose their two opening MLS games. But one of those was to Nashville, who scored on their only shot on goal of the game. The other was a loss to Real Salt Lake during a very bizarre weather delay. Since then, the Sounders are unbeaten in seven matches all comps whilst advancing to the final of the CCL. Pretty good!
Miami might still be bad
Inter Miami picked up their first win of the season last week against New England, but it wasn’t the most convincing win. They’re also shockingly bad on the road, having already been outscored 8-2 in their two road games this season. Now, they have to travel to Seattle for the first time in their history with a very long list of injuries. Actually, this is their third ever trip to the west coast.
Before there was Obed Vargas and the current crop of kids there was Jordan Morris. Before all the homegrown players the Sounders have had over the years, Seattle had DeAndre Yedlin. Seattle’s original starboy. You know the story: After helping the Sounders to an Open Cup and Supporters Shield win in 2014, Yedlin left Seattle for Tottenham Hotspur. Yedlin would go on to a few more stops in England and a stint in Turkey before returning to MLS this offseason with Inter Miami. Tonight will be the first time DeAndre gets to play in his hometown since he left almost 8 years ago. Welcome home, buddy.
Get there early, be patient
If you’re going to the game tonight, you need to know that SoDo is going to be jammed pack. The Mariners are taking on the Houston Astros next door at T-Mobile Park with first pitch happening at 6:10pm. That’s not the only thing happening in the area. There is a concert that starts at 7pm at WaMu Theater. Right around the time the game ends, there’s a concert that starts at 9pm at Showbox Sodo. Things are going to be crowded around the stadium.