An undermanned Seattle Sounders(0-2) team saw its chances to win an MLS road game at FC Dallas Toyota Stadium go from bad to nearly impossible in a matter of 17 minutes. The 17 minutes was the time difference from FC Dallas forward Roland Lamah scoring the games opening goal at the 20-minute mark and Clint Dempsey’s straight Red Card for violent conduct at the 37th-minute mark.
The depleted Sounders started the game without starters Nicolas Lodeiro, Will Bruin, Victor Rodriguez and Osvaldo Alonso due to injuries. One or two names from the above-named MASH unit would have given Brian Schmezter’s side a chance to be competitive and maybe win the game before the opening whistle blew. A goal down and a man down was too big of a burden to bear for a team that was wounded both physically and psychologically.
The Dallas game was just four days after the Sounders disappointing 3-0 loss at Chivas Guadalajara. The loss knocked the Sounders out of the CONCACAF quarterfinal round after having secured a 1-0 win at home in the two-legged series.
Despite being a man down and playing with a depleted side on Sunday the Sounders managed to limp into the halftime break down just one goal and entertaining thoughts of stealing a point in a hostile environment.
The Sounders delusions of grandeur were quickly erased in the 60th minute when Dallas Forward Maxi Urruti’s right footed shot found the back of the Seattle goal for the 2-0 lead. Lamah scored his second goal the game and gave FC Dallas its third goal of the game when he received a pass from Anton Nedyalkov that enable him to slip past the Seattle defense and chip the ball past a sprawling Stefan Frei who had left his line to cut down the angle.
The Sounders are a beaten down team that is in need of physical and psychological healing. The start of the season was always going to be difficult due to the CONCACAF Champion League Tournament. The Tournament is something the Sounders asked for and the team got what it wanted. A chance to test the team’s depth and mental toughness.
The growing pains of Handwalla Bwana, Alex Roldan, Jordy Delem and Henry Wingo will all pay a dividend later on the season. Schmetzer now has a good idea of what type of skill levels he has in newcomers Magnus Wolff Eikrem, Kim Kee-hee, Waylon Francis and Jordan McCrary. To say the first three weeks of March were a glorified preseason would be pure folly. The truth is the Sounders are 0-2 in MLS and have just under two weeks to regroup and recover.
POST GAME NOTES
- With the result, Sounders FC moves to 0-2-0 on the season, with the next MLS match coming on March 31 at home against the Montreal Impact on the Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field (7:00 p.m. PT / JOEtv, YouTube TV, 950 KJR AM, El Rey 1360 AM).
- Sunday marked the first start of the season for Kelvin Leerdam, who made his 2018 debut as a substitute against Chivas Guadalajara on Wednesday. The Dutch fullback had previously not factored for Sounders FC this year due to a right ankle sprain.
- Handwalla Bwana made his first career MLS start on Sunday, having previously come on a substitute against LAFC on March 4. The rookie Homegrown Player made his first professional start in the first leg of the SCCL Quarterfinals against Chivas Guadalajara.
- Alex Roldan made his MLS debut when he came on a substitute for Handwalla Bwana in the 64th minute. The 2018 First Round MLS SuperDraft selection from Seattle University and brother of Sounders FC midfielder Cristian Roldan made his professional debut in the first leg of the SCCL Round of 16 matchup at Santa Tecla FC on February 22.
- Kim Kee-hee made his MLS debut when he came on for Román Torres in the 74th minute. The South Korean defender made his Sounders FC debut as an injury substitution in Wednesday’s loss at Chivas Guadalajara.
FC Dallas – Jimmy Maurer; Reggie Cannon, Matt Hedges, Reto Ziegler, Anton Nedyalkov; Carlos Gruezo, Jacori Hayes (Paxton Pomykal 68′), Michael Barrios, Mauro Diaz (Cristian Colman 80′), Roland Lamah (Santiago Mosquera 80′)
Substitutes not used: Kyle Zobeck, Maynor Figueroa, Ryan Hollingshead, Tesho Akindele