So I guess all the US Mens National team supporters are lending Sounders their ‘panic button’ temporarily. Well that’s all fine and good but there really isn’t any need for it, just yet. The club has struggled to produce goals and that’s true enough but the idea that this current club isn’t near as talented as it was last year is false. Judging talent and trying to project who is successful and who isn’t, can be a difficult task. But there are a few indicators for the team as a whole. I’m a little scrunched for time so I’ll make this quick.
A) Key Passes – Okay, yeah, a shut out against Montreal at home and on road against a weakened San Jose back line doesn’t exactly fill you with confidence–and we’re not even speaking about the CCL performance down in Mexico. But, I’m not yet ready to abandon all hope. Looking at their first 3 games, the Sounders have produced 21 Key Passes that were chances for goals. They produced 22 their first 3 games last year–and rather than managing a 2 goal tally they found the net 5 times in their first three games last year. I’m alright with playing a ‘bad luck’ card on this one.
B) Shots On Target – Sounders have taken 31 shots on goal this season, finding their target only 10 times. A ratio last year which was marginally successful standing 52%, drops now down to 32% success rate finding it’s target. It doesn’t take a scientist to tell you the more times they find their target the more likely they are to score goals and win points. The take away though is that they are being more aggressive and attempting more stabs at goal. The unfortunate bit, is that they aren’t nearly as successful.
Having Oba Martins finally make his first start for the Rave Green is going to be a huge boost. As will Eddie Johnson’s return to the line-up. There are a lot of things that have been frustrating this early season. The Sounders attempting chances at scoring goals is a refreshing task and one that we all take as a positive sign for the future of the season in the Emerald City.