The Sounders face another desperate team in the Vancouver Whitecaps, who lead Seattle by only two points in the standings, tomorrow.
The Sounders will face their bitter rivals to the north at home tomorrow at 1 pm in yet another crucial match that could determine Seattle’s postseason fate. All of the games from here on in are crucial for the Sounders’ postseason fate, but this edition of the Cascadia Cup will add more fuel to the fire of the rivalry with our friends from the north.
Amidst the news that veteran Sounders defender Zach Scott will retire at the end of the season and reports that star forward Clint Dempsey has returned to training after being hospitalized due to an irregular heartbeat, the Sounders find themselves in a tough race for sixth place in the MLS Western Conference. Sitting two points below Vancouver in the standings, Seattle has a huge opportunity to win and leapfrog their Canadian rivals.
The North Remembers
I’m sorry, I had to. The Whitecaps beat the Sounders on two penalty kicks from Pedro Morales in March and have been whistled for a 410 penalties, behind only DC United for most in the MLS. If the Sounders hope to avenge their tough 2-1 loss, they will have to be tough mentally and physically and avoid PKs this time around.
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Seattle captain and defensive whiz Brad Evans will return to the Seattle lineup tomorrow after missing the Earthquakes game with a sore lower back. I hurt my back just from sitting in this chair, so I know the feeling. The Sounders will be able to release Cristian Roldan back to the middle of the field where he belongs instead of keeping him at the right flank as interim head coach Brian Schmetzer was forced to do in Evans’ absence last week.
The Sounders are 3-1-3 in their last seven matches, while the Whitecaps have struggled, going 1-5-3 in their last nine after their 3-1 win at Columbus last weekend. Seattle will likely try to be aggressive early and put the visitors on their heels in a crucial matchup.