Apr 2, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Sounders FC midfielder Steve Zakuani (11) moves the ball between Santos Laguna midfielder Rodolfo Salinas (17) and defender Jorge Ivan Estrada (4) during the 2nd half at CenturyLink Field. Santos Laguna defeated Seattle 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Seattle Goes Out To Mexico Down More Than Just A Goal

It’s true. There are a lot of hurdles to overcome as the Sounders take the pitch in Torreon. The  slumping club will fight an up hill battle to attempt and claim only their second win since the beginning of March and competitive matches.

Sure, their down 0 – 1 after falling short at home against Santos Laguna. But a unfortunate parry off the gloves of Marcus Hahnemann and a missed assignment on Herculez Gomez in transition on a counter attack put the Warriors in the driver seat.

But, all is not lost Sounder faithful. The chance is still there and hope is alive for the time being. We’ve been all disappointed by the lack of goals but the domination of the opposing mid-field with the like of Ozzie Alonso and Shalrie Joseph. Both providing something a bit different.

With Brad Evans being out, it increases the likelihood that we’ll see those two out there and at it again in some what of a 4-2-3-1 diamond-esque formation. They will attempt to disrupt and prevent the sudden and lightening quick counters by the forward-ish trio of Peralta, Gomez and Darwin.

Mario Martinez will need to step up; the talk is that he’s gone missing for the majority of the time he’s spent out on the pitch. The general talk among supporters is that he has yet to live up to the World Cup/Olympic billing that we’ve seen from him while playing for his country, Honduras.

I’m not convinced that properly articulates what he’s meant to the club this season. His ability to create some space and deliver opportunities has shown to be a great talent and a possible succession for Mauro Rosales. Unfortunately there just has been very limited success by those on the receiving end.

That’s where the rubber will meet the road. The Sounders will have to do something with the 30+ crosses they are going to receive into the box tomorrow night. We already know that unless Santos Laguna digs up someone on their bench that can primarily win headers in the box, the Sounders are going to get their share of chances at Oswaldo Sanchez goal. The key is going to be regularly doing something with the balls played in and not losing possession in those key situations. 

Sammy Ochoa has to be more responsible with the ball, his work rate and ability to provide hold up play goes a long way towards what makes him possibly capable of being secondary striker or a good “secondary guy” in Major League Soccer. But, he’s got to show that he can do more than just that and when he has the opportunity that he can put home shorts and be a finisher. Something he did not display last week.

Of course Obafemi Martins is out with his knee issue and while it’s possible that Eddie Johnson returns to the teams it’s more important to me that he’s healthy when we start back to league play on Saturday.

A late sub in the 70′ minute or so is a very likely possibility but wouldn’t it be nice if the Sounders had a commanding 2 – 0 lead at that point and didn’t require his services?

I think so too.


Tags: Brad Evans Eddie Johnson Mario Martinez Sammy Ochoa

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