Brian Schmetzer: 'They didn't play up to their potential'

Seattle Sounders head coach was not happy after the loss in the final preseason test.

Interview: Brian Schmetzer post-match vs Sacramento Republic
Interview: Brian Schmetzer post-match vs Sacramento Republic / Seattle Sounders FC

The first preseason game of the Seattle Sounders disappointed their fans, who expected to see a high-level performance. The team played poorly against the Sacramento Republic, a USL club. The head coach, Brian Schmetzer was critical of the team's performance.

Schmetzer pinpointed specific areas where the Sounders underperformed. A poorly organized free kick and a sloppy clearance leading to a foul were just two examples. The left side of the field, he emphasized, needs significant improvement. While some players, like Jordan Morris and Cristian Roldan, drew praise, the overall performance wasn't up to the Sounders' standard.

The interview also provided updates on injured players. JP is likely to return for the next game, while Alex Roldan's status remains uncertain. Yeimar is expected to sit out as a precaution. Schmetzer's lineup choices were influenced by the upcoming clash against LAFC, hinting at potential tactical adjustments for that pivotal match.

Rumors of a potential switch to a two-striker system were quickly squashed by Schmetzer. He reiterated his faith in the current formation and expressed confidence in Pedro de la Vega, the team's new signing. De la Vega is set to make his debut in the next game, and Schmetzer is eager to see what he can bring to the table.

The game(s)

The Seattle Sounders faced Sacramento Republic in a pair of matches this Saturday (Feb 17). In the first game, the first team lineup was: Stefan Frei; Cody Baker, Nathan, Jackson Ragen (Xavier Arreaga 63’), Nouhou (Gallatin Sandnes^ 87’); Josh Atencio, Obed Vargas, Cristian Roldan, Albert Rusnák, Léo Chú; Jordan Morris. Sacramento scored at the end of the first half on a free kick.

Due to visa/green card issues, Yeimar only began training this week. Alex, who was injured during the preseason in Spain, is still uncertain for the season opener against LAFC, according to Schmetzer. João Paulo experienced some hip discomfort and was sidelined as a precaution, but he is expected to be ready for the next game.

The second game had Andrew Thomas; Kalani Kossa-Rienzi*, Stuart Hawkins, Xavier Arreaga (Gallatin Sandnes^ 61’), Jon Bell; Danny Leyva, Snyder Brunell+; Dylan Teves (Chris Aquino 78’), Danny Musovski (Paul Rothrock 36’), Pedro de la Vega (Georgi Minoungou+ 36’); Raúl Ruidíaz

Pedro de la Vega scored his first goal as a Sounders from the penalty kick. Raul Ruidiaz made it 2-0 with an assist from Paul Rothrock.

In the second half of the second game, the Seattle Sounders played against Tacoma Defiance players. Jonathan Bell scored after an assist from Ruidiaz. Chris Aquino sealed the victory with the final score.

+ 2024 Tacoma Defiance player
* Unsigned SuperDraft selection or preseason guest player
^ Sounders FC Academy Player