The Sounders, with the best mark in MLS (5-1-1) over their past seven matches, will “open the bowl” for their Cascadia Cup contest against Vancouver Saturday night.
MATCH: Vancouver Whitecaps (4-4-4, 16 points, 7th, MLS West) at Seattle Sounders FC (5-4-3, 18 points, 6th, MLS West). TYPE: MLS. WHEN: Saturday, 7:30 p.m., CenturyLink Field. MEETING: 130th all-time (Sounders lead 62-46-21); 6th MLS (Sounders lead 2-0-3). TV: NBCSN. RADIO: 97.3 KIRO FM; SPANISH: KOMO2 (Comcast Ch. 114) and La Gran D 99.3 FM.
For the first time this season, the Sounders will “open the bowl” when they play their second Cascadia Cup match against long-time rival Vancouver. In eight previous games featuring crowds in excess of 40,000, the Sounders are 6-0-2 with a +14 goal differential.
While the Sounders are 2-0-3 all-time against the Whitecaps (MLS era) and enter the match with the best record in the league over the past seven matches (5-1-1), Vancouver has done one thing Seattle couldn’t: defeat the LA Galaxy. The Sounders lost to the Galaxy 4-0 two weeks ago while Vancouver scored a 3-1 win May 11 at BC Place.
Unbeaten in its last three (2-0-1), Vancouver has yet to win a Cascadia Cup match in the MLS era, going winless in 11 matches against the Sounders (0-2-3) and Portland Timbers (0-4-2).
The Sounders scored multiple goals goals in four of the five meetings with two shutouts. Eight of Seattle’s nine goals have been scored in the final 45 minutes, with four scored in the final quarter hour. Brad Evans, who made national headlines Friday night when he scored the winning goal in the U.S. victory at Jamaica in World Cup qualifying play, and Mauro Rosales lead all players with two assists in the five meetings.
Meanwhile, Martin Rennie’s club is seventh in MLS, two points behind Seattle and 12 shy of Dallas in first.
Vancouver is led by forwards Kenny Miller and Camilo, who lead with three goals apiece. Miller, a Scottish international who joined Vancouver last season, has appeared in four matches but is second in the league with 0.89 goals per 90 minutes.
Camilo, in his third MLS season, has three goals, including a goal and an assist in a 2-2 draw against Portland May 18. He has two career goals against Seattle. Striker Darren Mattocks has two goals and an assist in six starts after posting seven goals in 15 starts as a rookie in 2012.
With Evans, Eddie Johnson (USA) and Mario Martinez (Honduras) fulfilling national team obligations and Shalrie Joseph suspended, the Sounders caught a break this week when Obafemi Martins officially protested the red card he received against Chivas and had his appeal upheld. The Sounders list Martins as probable.
“He’s gotten goals for us, for sure,” coach Sigi Schmid said of Martins, who has four. “He’s there to finish chances. That’s what you want from your strikers. Getting Oba back is a big plus for us. Oba and Lamar (Neagle) have played together fairly well. To be able to come back with those two is a huge plus and helps in terms of making our lineup decisions this week.”
Osvaldo Alonso, who missed the LA Galaxy match with a quadriceps injury and had to come off after 21 minutes against Chivas, probably won’t play. Andy Rose is listed as probable to start in his place. Steve Zakuani is also out with pending surgery for a sports hernia.
Cascadia Cup Standings: Portland, 0-0-2, 0 goal differential; Vancouver, 0-0-1, 0; Seattle, 0-0-1, 0.
SOUNDERS PROBABLE LINEUP: Goalkeeper — Michael Gspurning. Defenders – Leo Gonzalez, Djimi Traore, Zach Scott, DeAndre Yedlin. Midfielders — Servando Carrasco, Mauro Rosales, Andy Rose, Alex Caskey. Forwards — Lamar Neagle, Obafemi Martins.
WHITECAPS PROBABLE LINEUP: Goalkeeper — Brad Knighton. Defenders — Jordan Harvey, Johnny Leveron, Andy OBrien, Greg Klazura. Midfielders — Jun Marques Davidson, Nigel Reo-Coker, Matt Watson, Russell Teibert. Forwards — Kenny Miller, Camilo Sanvezzo.
INJURIES: Seattle — GK Josh Ford, out; Vancouver – None. SUSPENSIONS: Seattle — Shalrie Joseph.
SERIES: Dates to June 19, 1974, when the Sounders, then of the North American Soccer League, met the Whitecaps at Vancouver’s Empire Stadium. Since then, the franchises have met 129 times while playing in various leagues, Seattle leading 62-46 with 21 draws. The most recent meeting occurred Sept. 29, 2012, the sides playing to a 0-0 draw. In the 2012 season series, Sounders earned two road draws and a shutout home victory. The sides will meet again July 6 at Vancouver and Oct. 9 in Seattle.
SOUNDERS STATS / NOTES
SOUNDERS MLS LEADERS
|Starts||Gspurning 12, Yedlin 11, Traore 11|
|Goals||Johnson 4, Martins 4, Neagle 3, Rosales 2|
|Assists||Rosales 3, Evans 2, Neagle 2|
|Shots||Johnson 22, Evans 17, Martinez 13|
|Shots On Goal||Johnson 10, Neagle 7, Martins 6|
|Fouls Caused||Alonso 18, Yedlin 16, 3 tied at 12|
|Fouls Suffered||Johnson 20, Rosales 16, Alonso 16|
|Offsides||Johnson 17, Evans 5, Neagle 5|
|Corner Kicks||Rosales 33, Martinez 17|
|Cautions||Johnson 4, Evans 2|
|Ejections||Neagle, Yedlin, Joseph, Martins, Hahnemann|
VANCOUVER NOTES: Vancouver is coming off a 2-1 win over the New York Red Bulls on goals by Jordan Harvey and Kenny Miller. It marked Vancouver’s first road win . . . Midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker, who joined Vancouver in the offseason after a long career in England, has started 10 of 11 games and registered an assist in a 3-1 win at Los Angeles May 11 . . . Defender Lee-Young Pyo, who made 33 appearances in his first MLS season in 2012, has played in all 12 games and had an assist in the season opener against Toronto FC.
COMING UP: Sounders play at Real Salt Lake June 22 and return to CenturyLink Field July 3 to host D.C. United.
Seattle Sounders FC 2013 Schedule / Results
(5-4-3, 18 points, MLS; 1-1-0 CCL; 0-1-0 U.S. Open Cup)
|3/6||*at Tigres||7:00||Fox Soccer||L||1-0||0-0-0|
|3/23||^at San Jose||7:30||KING 5||L||1-0||0-2-1|
|5/26||^at LA Galaxy||8:00||ESPN2||L||4-0||4-4-3|
|7/13||^at San Jose||7:30||KING/KONG||—||—||—|
|9/21||^at LA Galaxy||7:30||NBCSN||—||—||—|
|10/19||^at FC Dallas||1:00||NBCSN||—||—||—|
*=CONCACAF; ^=Major League Soccer; #=U.S. Open Cup