The Seattle Sounders head deep into the heart of Texas tonight to take on Austin FC. Q2 Stadium is the home to one of the more memorable away wins in recent Sounders history, where a ragtag bunch of academy kids went toe-to-toe with Austin's first-choice XI, only to have Raúl Ruidíaz sub on and absolutely bam on the green team copycats.
Can the Sounders draw on some magic to repeat history or are things so bleak that we're set for a night of disappointment? Let's dig into this match to see what could happen.
One key stat
0.79 per game - From Jeremiah's piece yesterday, the Sounders have only scored 15 goals in their last 19 games.
Stop me if you've heard this story before: The Sounders are in a bit of no-man's land when it comes to their own vibes and their about to play a team that's at the rock bottom of theirs.
That's where we find ourselves tonight. Seattle is doing just about the bare minimum to keep their season alive and Austin is in a world of hurt. The Verde have lost four straight across all competitions. Two of those losses came in the group stage of the Leagues Cup and the other two were in the two games since returning to MLS play. They got absolutely housed by St. Louis City to the tune of 6-3. To make matters worse for them, they conceded a 97th minute winner to Dallas on Saturday.
Typically this season, when Seattle ends up playing a team in a really bad situation, that team finds a way to save their season. I know that technically speaking a loss on the road midweek against Austin with a rotated squad isn't the end of the world, especially with Portland coming up on the weekend ... but with the draw to Minnesota, fans are getting antsy.
How close to full strength is everyone?
- It sounds like the Sounders aren't necessarily in a hurry to get Cristian Roldan involved in this match. He traveled with the team to Minnesota, but he’s still listed as questionable and all indications are that he won’t play tonight.
- Austin are going to be without Daniel Pereira, who is one of their starting central midfielders. He picked up two yellow cards against Dallas over the weekend and is suspended for this match. They're also without leftback Zan Kolmanic, who tore his ACL earlier this season.
Sounders (4-2-3-1): Frei; Nouhou, Arreaga, Yeimar, RBW; Vargas, Atencio; Chu, Rusnak, Dobbelaere; Morris
Austin FC (4-2-3-1): Stuver; Lundqvist, Hedges, Cascante, Gallagher; Wolff, Ring; Rodriguez, Driussi, Rigoni; Zardes
What you need to know
Sounders record (3rd in the West): 10-9-7 +4 GD
Opponent record (9th in the West): 9-11-5, -4 GD
Where: Q2 Stadium, Austin, Texas
Kickoff time: 5:39pm Pacific Time
Commentators (AppleTV): Keith Costigan and Maurice Edu