The Sounders will get their first look at the brand-new MLS expansion team Atlanta United when they host them at the Clink tomorrow.
The Sounders will take on Atlanta United for the first time in MLS tomorrow at 7p.m. at CenturyLink Field in Seattle. It will be their first-ever competitive meeting. Atlanta beat the Sounders 4-2 in a February’s Carolina Challenge Cup friendly in Charleston, South Carolina while sporting most of their starters against Academy and trial players. Seattle’s starters started filtering in throughout the second half of the loss.
The most notable matchup between the Sounders and any Atlanta soccer team in recent history was the 2007 USL Championship match, when none other than Brian Schmetzer himself led Seattle to a title.
This time around, of course, the Sounders are defending MLS Cup champions coming off a resounding home victory over the New York Red Bulls and a tie in a friendly against Club Necaxa. Atlanta is making its first trip to Seattle as a MLS squad with a winning record.
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Atlanta is 2-1-0 on the young season and feature the leading goal scorer in MLS, Josef Martinez. Seattle fans will unfortunately miss Martinez’s CenturyLink debut due to a left quad injury that will sideline him for four to six weeks. Along with Martinez, Atlanta features several exciting South American players, including Miguel Almiron, Yamil Asad, and Hector Villalba. The four of them have combined to score nine of Atlanta’s 11 goals so far this season.
Atlanta also leans heavily on former Sounder Tyrone Mears, who has started every match and played every minute for the visitors so far. He even recorded an assist on Atlanta’s first MLS goal in franchise history.
Seattle could be without their two top goal-scorers. Clint Dempsey will likely miss the match for international duty with the US team as they prepare for a World Cup Qualifying match against Panama. Dempsey of course scored a hat trick for the US side during their 6-0 thumping of Honduras last week. Jordan Morris is dealing with an ankle injury and is listed as day-to-day.
The Sounders could also face Atlanta without Nicolas Lodeiro, Joevin Jones, and Roman Torres, who are away on international duty. They should be back in time for the match, but Schmetzer is determined not to push his key players too hard this early in the regular season.
Catch the game tomorrow at 7p.m. on FS1.