Photo Credit: Otto Gruele Jr./Getty Images
Seattle was buzzing with talk of the Sounders going 3-0 for their best start in an MLS season. This was just not to be as the Sounders fell 1-0 to the visiting San Jose Earthquakes. San Jose came to Seattle ready to play and attack, which was Seattle’s main downfall as both Toronto and Houston were both defensive oriented in Seattle’s last two fixtures. Also a factor in the loss was a devastated starting lineup with Johansen, Evans, and most importantly Rosales, all out with injuries.
The game started off well enough for Seattle as Fernandez, Estrada, and Montero led some early offensive efforts. But in the 23rd minute, some impish theatrics from Earthquake forward Lenhart led to Seattle being punished with a penalty kick which Chris Wondolowski buried past Michael Gspurning. The pressure was on for Seattle, and, given the poor state of MLS officiating, Seattle put forth the best effort they could. Unfortunately, the lack of playmakers and workmanship with the losses of Evans, Johansen, and Rosales led to rushed and frantic play for the Sounders. As a result, Seattle was never able to swing the momentum back in their favor and the rave green were dealt their first loss of the season.
The hope is that once are starting lineup is returned to full health, our winning ways will return as well. Our ability to maintain our playmakers in the starting lineup is the key to a successful season. Last year, injury was our undoing. Let’s hope that last night’s loss is not the beginning of repeated disappointment.