Most Seattle Sounders fans have been frantically checking for updates on players such as Brad Evans and Osvaldo Alonso all week. The Sounders and Sigi Schmid haven’t really provided any update or relief.
Schmid has been consistent all week in labeling all injuries as “day-to-day”, with the only additional clarification (if you can really call it that) on Friday afternoon being that apparently they are “making progress”.
Does “making progress” on a “day-to-day” injury indicate that they are likely to be fit and ready for the starting XI on Sunday? Probably not.
In fact, aside from starting, it is probably unlikely that either Brad Evans or Osvaldo Alonso will see any playing time on Sunday. They could be fit for the Western Conference Finals though, should the Sounders still be in the playoffs.
Here’s the Sounders Nation predicted starting lineup for the huge clash against FC Dallas on Sunday:
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RB – Mears
CB – Marshall
CB – Scott
LB – Fisher
RM – Valdez
CM – Friberg
CM – Rose
LM – Ivanschitz
FW – Dempsey
FW – Martins
It could be argued that Schmid is merely being deliberately vague in order to lull FC Dallas into thinking that they will be up against a different starting XI. However, his comments are very similar to last week in regards to Alonso’s injury. The result then was that he didn’t even make the squad, never mind starting XI.
The reality is that the injuries are actually more likely to be the opposite. Evans and Alonso may well not really have a genuine chance of playing at this stage.
Therefore, Schmid’s comments are still mind games but for different reasons. Labeling Evans and Alonso as having a good chance of making it means that FC Dallas have to prepare in case they are.
When all is said and done, the similarities between the injury comments this week and last week appear too similar. Hopefully this has been misread and at least one will make it in time, but at this stage it looks unlikely.
The Sounders have had players missing throughout their playoff run this season. Whoever takes to the field on Sunday is good enough to get the job done. Sure, things would be easier with a fully fit Evans and Alonso, but that isn’t the case.
The Sounders need to play the hand that is dealt them, not get disheartened by misfortune. They have done this very well so far in the playoffs, there is no reason why they won’t again on Sunday.