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Realio’s Ratings: A tale of two games

Nothing that we do, is done in vain. I believe, with all my soul, that we shall see triumph.

Last Updated
9 min read
Kayla Mehring / Sounder at Heart

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of Rusnák, it was the age of Obed, it was the epoch of Raúl, it was the epoch of Morris. For the second match in four days, the suddenly resilient Sounders overcame a two goal deficit, and against Dallas found the fortitude to muster a late stoppage-time game-winner. The 3-2 win was a potential turning point in the year, and although it was defined by offensive struggles early and yet again some puzzling defensive lapses, the resurgent Sounders showed a stronger mental resiliency than previously displayed. 

First 77 minutes: A dominant team who did everything but score, but also fumbled two goals in short time and looked to have squandered vital points due to the continual lack of creating big enough chances and finishing. 

After 77: A dominant team who did everything, controlling play, attacking, being direct, scoring off of set pieces and crosses, stretching the field, HAYING THE FE. 


Stefan Frei – 5 | Community – 6.0

Frei had three saves in this match, and outside of a few minutes of defensive brain farts, was rarely tested. 

First 77 minutes: Frei probably could have been better on the second goal, something that seems to be a bit of a recurring theme. 

After 77: I have no idea what Frei was doing in minute 97 when he came out and nearly conceded, luckily the Dallas player tried to flop instead of score with Stef well outside the goalmouth. 

Overall: He did just enough to earn the win, but it wasn’t easy. 


Nouhou – 6 | Community – 6.1 (off 73’ for RBW)

Nouhou had 55 touches, 90 percent passing, and his usual strong defensive work on the back left. He again wasn’t a high volume attacker, but was 1/3 long balls and 1/2 crossing. 

First 77 minutes: The second Dallas goal found Nouhou on the right, and forced to defend two players. The power of math overcame his late, sliding challenge.

After 77: Nouhou subbed off before the positive fireworks. 

Overall: Using Nouhou as a defensive player who stays home more seemed to be the plan and worked well, and bringing him out for more offense when needed was a solid move. 

Jackson Ragen – 6 | Community – 5.7

With 71 touches and 86 percent passing, Jackson wasn’t a huge factor in distribution. He had two tackles and two clearances. 

First 77 minutes: I don’t know what Ragen was thinking, in a match where Seattle was dominating pretty much everything but the scoreboard, attempting a fancy flick pass from the back, opening up the entire defense, and allowing an opportunistic Dallas side their first goal in the 66th minute. 

After 77: Attacking the goal via a high line and forcing turnovers helped jump start some offensive play, and staying forward on set pieces saw Ragen in the midst of a lot of frenetic attacking in the goal box. 

Overall: Jackson’s low usage was a good thing, as the team was dominant. He has to fix those small brain farts that balloon into giant errors. 

Yeimar – 6 | Community – 5.9

Yeimar had the second most touches and a sparkling 88 percent passing rate, combining strong defensive numbers with some startling struggles as Dallas seemed to capitalize on each of their few chances. 

First 77 minutes: On the first goal, Yeimar was caught flat-footed as Dallas scored behind him. On the second, he was inexplicably playing left back. 

After 77: The never say die Sounders sent Yeimar forward to be an attacking option late. He wreaked havoc with some important headers and scramble play, as well as recovery defense. 

Overall: Yeimar has seen some struggles the last few matches. 

Cristian Roldan – 6 | Community – 6.6

A shot on goal and two key passes is pretty similar to what he was producing at a higher position earlier this season. He added three tackles, three clearances, and two interceptions in a stiff defensive outing in a relatively new position. 

First 77 minutes: A vital piece of possession in the back, Roldan often drifted central to offer support in the middle and help press JP and Obed forward. A number of uncharacteristic turnovers were annoying. 

After 77: Active in the attack and shuttling the ball quickly from the defensive end forward, it was Roldan’s shot that was deflected on goal, forced a save, and created the game tying corner kick.

Overall: The Cristian Roldan as right back experiment is an overwhelming success. 

Defensive Midfield

Obed Vargas – 7 | Community – 7.0

Obed wasn’t a defensive presence outside positioning, but his offensive creation was excellent. Two shots, three key passes, and 93 percent completion rate showed his burgeoning offensive skillset.

First 77 minutes: Obed was solid, and seemed to find an inverted positioning as more of an 8 next to Rusnák (with JP behind) and the linkup play was silky smooth. His positioning on the second Dallas goal was not good.

After 77: A hard foul to his leg and ankle from behind had Obed looking for a sub and barely capable of moving late in the match. Somehow, Vargas found the inner strength to power through the pain, and unleashed the best pass of the entire year, a pinpoint through ball cutting out four defenders and putting Morris in space to win the match. 

Overall: He continues to improve. 

João Paulo – 8 | Community – 7.5

JP was again fantastic, bringing the deep-lying playmaker Seattle needs to combine with Rusnák and the verticality from Morris. He had four shots, four key passes, and a ridiculous 90 percent passing rate in a team-high 121 touches. 

First 77 minutes: A 15th minute shot was nearly brilliant, but was deflected out by the post, as none of his shots were “on goal.” 

After 77: Combining with everyone, stealing possession, finding the danger players and willing the ball into the attacking third for nearly the entirety of the last 20 minutes of the match. 

Overall: The resurgence of the Sounders is a mirror of the resurgence of João Paulo. 

Attacking Midfield

Léo Chú – 5 | Community – 5.1 (off 67’ for Rothrock)

Chú had a solid 41 touches, but was only able to create a single key pass, often roaming inside to try to connect but ultimately being unable to stretch the field or combine centrally to attack the goal.

First 77 minutes: Chú struggled to impact the match, not connecting well in the attack with others. A beautiful cross in the 64th was missed by Raúl Ruidíaz, and should have been a goal. 

After 77: Chú subbed off 10 minutes before the Sounders’ comeback, but more notably in between both of the Dallas goals, which seemed to have been supported by Léo’s penalty earned for taking too long to leave the field. 

Overall: This wasn’t a good look for a guy who is creating a big chance per match but also struggling to combine with any consistency and doesn’t seem to fit the play. 

Albert Rusnák – 8 | Community – 7.3

Six shots, three key passes, two assists, 93 percent passing — Albert was dealing. 

First 77 minutes: Albert was a fantastic connective force, continually moving, finding teammates, and setting up near chances. He was goal direct as well, with an excellent 36th minute cutback and shot forcing a big save. Five minutes later he tested Maarten Paes again. In the 76th, he again forced an acrobatic save.

After 77: Albert was a fantastic connective force, continually moving, and dialing up pinpoint crosses that earned him assists on each of the first two Sounder goals. 

Overall: The DP-level production we have craved has shown up with more frequency, as adjustments to personnel and tactics have fit Albert’s playstyle and led to his resurgent success.

Danny Musovski – 5 | Community – 5.0 (off 60’ for Ruidiaz)

Musovski got a chance to try the right wing, starting wide and pushing high as Seattle tilted the formation from right to left. A shot and two key passes highlighted his 30 touches. 

First 77 minutes: Danny was quiet, combining with teammates but not getting service from the left to utilize his aerial skills and not able to break through on goal down his wing.

After 77: Danny got a great view from the bench of the team finishing chances, unlike when he was in and they squandered countless opportunities.

Overall: Musovski brought some technical play and an ability to push high and offer an aerial threat, but didn’t show dangerous play and at times was completely ineffective.


Jordan Morris - 8 (MOTM) | Community – 8.3 (MOTM)

Three shots, three key passes, two goals, a 94th minute winner by breaking away and finishing clean, Morris was strong throughout, but strongest when Seattle needed him the most.

First 77 minutes: Goal dangerous but unable to break through, Morris did a ton of excellent holdup play to bring JP, Rusnák, and Chú into the attack centrally. 

After 77: A resurgent force, Morris was unleashed late and scored twice. The first came on a fantastic corner kick header that frankly I didn’t know he had, scoring from 12 yards out. The second was a brilliant vertical run and calm finish under pressure from three, earning Seattle the full three points. 

Overall: You can contain Jordan for 87 minutes but he’s going to drop two in the next six minutes, including a game-winner. 


Raúl Ruidiaz – 7 | Community – 7.0 (on 60’ for Musovski) 

Five shots, three on target, completing 100 percent of his passes, Raúl brought energy, urgency, and direct goal dangerous play that spurred the comeback.

First 77 minutes: Raúl wasn’t super effective for his 15 minutes prior to the explosion, being often redundant with Morris in space. 

After 77: This comeback win doesn’t happen without Raúl rising up and scoring the kind of goal he hasn’t scored all season, a brilliant header in the 78th minute from the penalty spot. He also forced an ugly long shot, which was more similar to what he’s brought to the team this season.

Overall: Ignoring the clear issues Raúl has with it, the super sub role looked good on him, and the Sounders. 

Paul Rothrock – 6 | Community – 6.1 (on 67’ for Chú)

Eventually getting on the field for Seattle, Paul brought his now trademark energy to the match. Three shots and two key passes on only nine touches showed an impactful outing again for the ascendent Rothrock.

First 77 minutes: Rothrock entered just in time to watch Dallas take a 2-0 lead. He entered later than he should have, due to Chú’s shenanigans in (not) leaving the field in a timely manner. 

After 77: In the most PR sequence ever in the 92nd minute, he hustled to win possession, then mis-hit a shot that bounced to Raúl, who forced a save that was eventually recycled back to Paul, who took a better shot that may have been worthy of a game-winning PK call. 

Overall: Sometimes energy is enough, and Rothrock thrived in the late game chaos.

Reed Baker-Whiting – 5 | Community – 5.8 (on 73’ for Nouhou)

Reed came in and was a nonfactor to the match, adding some offensive positioning but not any effective attacking in his limited 11 touches. 

First 77 minutes: Throwing caution to the wind, the Sounder staff pulled the more defensive Nouhou for Reed, who brought a more attack-focused skillset and helped Seattle push late. 

After 77: Inserted briefly before the Sounders surge, RBW supported getting the ball quickly into the attacking third, but wasn’t a factor. 

Overall: Everyone around him was doing stuff and he fit in well, without doing anything spectacular. 


Malik Badawi – 6 | Community – 5.2

The aggressive Sounders were on the front foot but also called for more fouls, as the teams ended up 16-2 in total whistles, although it was Dallas who had more yellow cards. 

First 77 minutes: A strong refereeing job saw this center make some good calls, but he didn’t have anything too controversial to look at.

After 77: Not checking a late and potential game-winning penalty shout was frustrating. That the referee then took time to consider a handball the other direction on Seattle’s 94th minute winner was more frustrating.

Overall: This was a high intensity match that was very stressful late, and the referee seemed to handle the pressure decently, not great. 

FC Dallas MOTM

It always feels odd to highlight a keeper on the losing end, and it’s become a common refrain in this section, but things could have been so much worse for FC Dallas had it not been for Maarten Paes.

First 77 minutes: Paes came up with five of his eventual seven saves, wiping out 0.46 PSxG in the process. None loomed larger than his denial of Rusnák’s first attempt in the 36th. The one he didn’t get to, JP’s effort in the 15th, was dealt with by the post.

After 77: Well, the wheels came off for FC Dallas. But none of Seattle’s three goals were the result of errors from Paes. In fact, he tallied two more big saves.

Next up: A crucial home match against a low-table team (again).