Aug 5, 2012; Seattle, WA, USA; LA Galaxy defender Bryan Gaul (35) pulls Seattle Sounders FC forward Fredy Montero (17) down while fighting for the ball during the 2nd half at CenturyLink Field. Seattle defeated Los Angeles 4-0. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE

Match Preview: Sounders May, Or May Not Have An Important Game Against LA

I’m sure the guys up stairs won’t exactly be thrilled with my lack of activity the last week but  it’s out of my hands so they can just go ahead and be grumpy. That said it’s time to get back at this while I have the time.

Tonight isn’t really a big game per se. It’s pretty obvious that the Sounders are going to do some shopping, maybe get their girlfriends something nice, maybe try a new restaurants or two and then… oh yeah, they have a game against LA! They should probably show up for that one.

All jokes aside there are real implications still left for the Sounders and the playoffs. It’s a chance for the Sounders to clinch home field advantage against anyone other than Sporting in the MLS Cup Championship game as well as give the Sounders an outside shot at a CCL spot for the 2013/2014 season should they not reach the Cup finals.

Really, as said else wear, it’s really hard to get up for the final game of the season. I mean, I don’t know that for a fact from a players side, I just know it as a fan I’m ready to start the playoffs. When you have your ticket punched or—in many other cases, not punched—it just seems like one last game to get through.

It’s looking good that we’ll have the #2 seed and whatever LA does tonight they are still going to face off against Vancouver this coming week. So what exactly do you play for at this point? Pride? A little bit of rivalry and the fact that it’s great to go into HDC and dominate? Fine tuning and prep for RSL? Whatever happens the Sounders are in for a tough game.

The Sounders last visit down to LA proved to be a pretty successful as they ran up a wild score of 3-0. I can’t imagine that this game will be that lopsided. Despite the injury to A.J. DeLaGarza, the LAG has, when healthy, been simply one of the more dominate back lines in the league. At times they showed the ability to shut down the Quakes offense on run of plays and you can imagine they’re goal is to keep the Sounders compact and narrow.

The Galaxy in the past couple of years have dominate the Sounders through the air and you have to wonder if they won’t dare them to try and beat them with Eddie Johnson. Omar Gonzalez is back and ripping up attacks better than ever.

But the question is going to be who will fill out the rest of the line-up card for LA? It’s very easy to see that they concerned with two very important pieces in Landon Donavan and David Beckham. But then I’m sure that anyone supporting LA is also hoping beyond hope that Juhnino and Robbie Keane don’t get injured or do something foolish that would prevent them from going up against Vancouver next week.

I think it’s safe to say that this game is going to have some less than exciting moments and I wouldn’t be surprised if this game ended in a 1-0 or 1-1 tie. The problem is that LA also has some young guys on the roster that they may just skew that and could make this game actually worth watching.

Likewise you have to think that the Sounders could give guys like Cordell Cato, Mario Martinez and David Estrada some looks. Which certainly would be entertaining to me. So it’s kind of hard to exactly know what the Sounders are going to send out this week. Hurtado and Ianni both have some question marks surrounding them.

Jhon Kennedy Hurtado wasn’t mentioned in the injury report but it had been speculated that he may not be good to go as he was a little knicked up in the last game. Patrick Ianni, however, did make the injury report and was marked as “doubtful”. I don’t know if that means he won’t play or that there is a 60% he won’t play or what that really means if anything at all. What I do know is that it’ll be interesting to see how Sigi sets the line-up and who gets the nod next to Jeff Parke for the Sounders.

This game is perhaps one of the most unusual ones over the course of the season. I’m not sure if it’ll be good. I’m not sure if there will be anyone worth really watching. I’m not sure if either team will really care about anything more than a draw.

Then again both teams have the pieces to make it competitive and fun to watch, and I’m sure that neither one want to settle going into a important series against tough teams on a downward slope. All we have is to tune into the four letter tonight and see what beholds us.


Tags: AJ DeLaGarza Cordell Cato David Beckham David Estrada Eddie Johnson Jeff Parke Jhon Kennedy Hurtado Juhnino Landon Donavan Mario Martinez Omar Gonzalez Patrick Ianni Robbie Keane