BY SPNW Staff 10:38AM 07/27/2012

Gspurning ready to return to Sounders’ goal

Struggling for defensive consistency since Michael Gspurning injured his hip, the Sounders hope a big part of the cure is the return of their No. 1 goalie for the 6 p.m. Saturday match in Colorado.

Sounders coach Sigi Schmid sounded optimistic after practice Thursday.

“This is the game we targeted,” Schmid said. “He’s gone through the weeks of training now to build up. He’s gone through training all this week.

“It’s good to have his voice back there again, have his presence in the locker room because he’s a veteran guy and a calming guy for us. If we can return to the defending we had at the beginning part of the season and the goals against, and that average we had at the beginning of the season with him in goal, that’ll help us a long way to achieve our goals.”

With Gspurning, who replaced Kasey Keller in goal, the Sounders began the MLS season 5-1-1 with three clean sheets and an 0.46 goals against average. After the injury, rookie Bryan Meredith came in for nine starts with a 1.20 average, and the Sounders were 3-3-4.  Andrew Weber, who was injured earlier, made three starts and the Sounders were 0-1-1.

“We’ll look at it and make sure there’s no setbacks between now and then, but he’s ready,” said Schmid.  “Andrew Weber is also ready and so we’ll have some good decisions to make in goalkeeping.”


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