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Union vs. Sounders: Highlights, stats and quotes

“We’ll learn from the nervy moments but it was a monster performance for a group who it’s them against the world.” - Brian Schmetzer

Last Updated
6 min read
Caean Couto / Sounders FC Communications

The Seattle Sounders picked up their second win of the season, a 3-2 road victory over the Philadelphia Union that ended up being much more nerve-racking than it probably needed to be. With the match starting in the 6th minute after it had originally been delayed on March 9, the Sounders jumped out to an early lead on a Raúl Ruidíaz goal from near midfield in the 13th minute. Obed Vargas added a second goal in the 22nd minute on a beautiful curling shot from just outside the penalty area. Ruidíaz then made it 3-0 on a penalty in the 37th minute.

It seemed like the Sounders might cruise to victory.

But the Union made a host of changes to start the second half and scored two goals in quick succession to make it 3-2 by the 57th minute. Rather than folding, the Sounders held on for the victory.




Seattle Sounders FC 3 – Philadelphia Union 2

Tuesday, April 30, 2024 

Venue: Subaru Park

Referee: Joe Dickerson

Assistants: Ryan Graves, Mike Nickerson

Fourth Official: Sergii Boiko

VAR: Sorin Stoica

Weather: 79 degrees and sunny


SEA – Raúl Ruidíaz 13’

SEA – Obed Vargas (Léo Chú) 22’

SEA – Raúl Ruidíaz (penalty) 37’

PHL – Jack McGlynn (Alejandro Bedoya) 56’

PHL – Daniel Gazdag (Quinn Sullivan) 57’ 


SEA – Jackson Ragen (caution) 27’

PHL – Mikael Uhre (caution) 45’+10’

SEA – Nouhou (caution) 59’ 


Seattle Sounders FC – Andrew Thomas; Alex Roldan, Yeimar, Jackson Ragen, Nouhou; Josh Atencio, Obed Vargas, Jordan Morris (Paul Rothrock 90’+1’), Cristian Roldan, Léo Chú (Albert Rusnák 59’); Raúl Ruidíaz (Cody Baker 84’)

Substitutes not used: Jacob Castro, Jonathan Bell, Danny Leyva, Dylan Teves, João Paulo

Total shots: 16

Shots on goal: 5

Fouls: 7

Offside: 3

Corner-Kicks: 10

Saves: 5

Philadelphia Union – Oliver Semmle; Jack Elliott, Jakob Glesnes, Olivier Mbaizo (Kai Wagner 46’), Nathan Harriel; Jose Martinez (Alejandro Bedoya 46’), Daniel Gazdag, Jesus Bueno (Jack McGlynn 46’), Quinn Sullivan; Mikael Uhre (Chris Donovan 81’), Julian Carranza

Substitutes not used: Andrew Rick, Jeremy Rafanello, Sanders Ngabo, Leon Flach

Total shots: 16

Shots on goal: 7

Fouls: 6

Offside: 2

Corner-kicks: 9

Saves: 2


Brian Schmetzer

“Raul’s first goal was classic Raúl. There aren’t many people int his league who have the savvy, game awareness and can see the goalkeeper is out of position. There was no hesitation. As soon as the ball was there, he knew what he was going to do.”

“We’ll learn from the nervy moments but it was a monster performance for a group who it’s them against the world. You can talk about what we can do better, but I’m going to talk about what we did well on two days’ rest. I’m proud of those kids.”

“Winning in MLS is hard. Winning away from home against the Eastern Conference leaders is really hard. We’ll do our normal review and think about what we can do better, but as far as I’m concerned the team played great.”

“Everyone can do the math. We’re still too far down there for my liking. We need points in every game we play for the remainder of the year.”

“The team already had belief, but we’re shooting ourselves in the foot. Stef’s reversal was that justification? No because we didn’t get any points. It doesn’t do us any good now. We need to collect points from here on out. We’re going to take this group and do the same thing. That group is committed to themselves. Maybe it’s a little bit of them against the rest of the world. I’ll let them write their own history but that’s a committed group.”

“(Obed) and Josh are tremendous talents. Those two kids had a monster performance against DC United. They played great outside the goal. They were covering. We put an attack-minded lineup out there, we weren’t coming here to just play defense. They did good work.”

“Raul gave us everything he had. He was gassed at end. Cristian gave us a gutty performance. Albert was able to extend some possession. Jordan had a great game. He was done. We had chances to put it away before they scored their goals.”

“The slip pass against Montreal, (Obed’s) goal was well taken. Some of the things he does like wiggle out of pressure, that’s who the kid is. He’s put himself in the conversation. Who is going to play where Cristian plays? You might have seen your answer tonight.”

“We have a talented team. They’re firmly committed to playing well. I think you’re going to see a very tight group of players doing what they can to get us out of this hole.”

“Our luck is turning. There was maybe a penalty shout. They were looking at our penalty. We’ve been stung with a bad luck.”

“Andrew made a couple key saves that kept us at 3-0. There’s a hierarchy but Andrew makes Stef better because Stef knows Andrew is right here. It’s a good situation for us. Our goalkeeping situation is really good.”

Obed Vargas

“It feels great to get my first goal. But the most important thing was getting the three points and winning.”

“We need to keep believing that we can carry on the momentum. We have to show up every day at training.”

“I’m just playing free and trying to have fun. It’s not a tactical change or anything big. It’s my third season. That’s something I always did at the lower levels but it’s starting to show up more now.”

“We were just eager from the last game. Playing with 10 men and having all those chances, it was just a shame we didn’t get a point. It was the momentum from that game that inspired us.”

Cristian Roldan

“You have to dig deep. It’s not even a bout adjusting, it’s about wanting it more. I’m really proud of the boys to put in a shift. It’s easy to put your head down after allowing two the way we did it. I’m really happy with how we handled it after they scored, but it’s more to work on.”

“It wasn’t an extremely convincing win by any means. It’s a result-driven league. No one is going to talk about this win or how we won in September. We’re struggling for points. We have to take those three points and try to ride this momentum. We scored three goals on the road. We looked like a different team over the last three halves. That’s what we’ll take from this game and hopefully carry on with some momentum.”

“At halftime we talked about how that half would be harder than first half. We knew they would send guys forward and cross the ball. Their subs got guys in the box. They are very direct, make life difficult with great service and always have guys in the box. We have to close down the crossing. We didn’t do that in second half but we haven’t been in this position all year. We have to be able to manage these games. This is a wakeup call for us that it didn’t go the wrong way.”

“I was right behind the ball and yelled ‘shoot’ right away. (Raul’s) a special player because he always has an eye for goal. He always wants to shoot. The whole half I was telling him to look at score. He was going to shoot any chance he saw.”

“I’m proud of the win, proud of how we played. The last three halves we demonstrated we’ll fight until the end. We need to continue to improve.”

“When we take the lead we need to be better about closing out games. Especially on the road, it’s important to keep teams to zero. The reality is we’re struggling and we need to defend as a group. 3-2 is a lead we’ll love but it’s not going to be easy to continue that way.”

“It was strange understanding that we played six minutes in this game and only had two days to prepare and understanding we had another game on Sunday. This whole month is tough but we need everyone on the team.”