The question for the Seattle Sounders ( 13-11-4, 44 points) is a simple now what. The Rave Green suffered a humiliating 3-0 loss the LA Galaxy (11-11-8, 41 points) Sunday afternoon at the StubHub center in LA. The pregame script had many plots. How would the Sounders react after their nine-game unbeaten streak was snapped in a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to the Philadelphia Union Wednesday night at home? Would the Sounders be able to overcome the injuries that sidelined Center back Chad Marshall and midfielder Harry Shipp?
For the Galaxy their mission was simple. Win the game get revenge for an earlier 5-0 loss to the Rave Green and get back in the playoff race. Well, it did not take long for the plot to unfold. The home side started on the front foot and never let up. Sounders Brad Smith was whistled for a foul on LA Galaxy forward Ola Kimara inside the goal box and the Galaxy was awarded a penalty.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic wasted no time in collecting his 18th goal of the season when he rifled the spot into the back of then to give the home side the 1-0 lead after just nine minutes of play.
LA doubled its lead just before halftime when Ibrahimovic turned into assist men when his pass into Seattle’s 18-yard box was collected by the onrushing Karama who made 2-0.
While the Sounders gave a good effort a the teams inability to create serious scoring chances ultimately doomed the team’s chances of getting back into the game. A Seattle misclearence inside their own defensive third led to goal number three for the Galaxy as Amir Boateng converted the miscue for the 3-0 lead.
WHATS NEXT FOR SOUNDERS
The answer is short and simple. The Sounders need a dose of amnesia regarding the last the two games and get back to the habits that had them set an MLS record of nine games in a row. To do that the Sounders will need to be more creative in the final third, make runs for one and another and do not give up on the ball when it is in the opponent goalmouth. The Sounders need to be more selfish around the goal area. While the loss hurt the Sounders are sixth place in the MLS the last and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
- Sounders FC is now 13-11-5 on the season, and currently sits in the sixth and final Audi MLS Cup Playoffs spot, three points ahead of LA and four points ahead of Vancouver Whitecaps FC. The Rave Green trail fourth-place Portland by three points and fifth-place Real Salt Lake by one point.
- After winning a league-record nine consecutive matches, the Rave Green have dropped two straight matches for the first time since June 2. The loss snapped a club-record seven-match road unbeaten streak dating back to June 14, as well as a four-match road winning streak that ranks second in club history (5 matches, August 6-October 22, 2011).
- Sounders FC is now 7-10-9 all-time against the Galaxy in MLS regular season play, including a 3-6-4 record at StubHub Center. The result snaps a six-match unbeaten streak (3-0-3) for Seattle against LA in regular-season play.
- Sunday snapped a streak of 13 matches in which Sounders FC allowed one goal or fewer, and its 32 goals allowed are tied for the fewest in MLS this season.
- Head Coach Brian Schmetzer deployed a 4-4-2 formation, with forwards Will Bruin and Raúl Ruidíaz starting together up front. Defender Román Torres started his first match since July 25 at San Jose, while rookie midfielder Handwalla Bwana was part of the First Team 18-man lineup for the first time since May 26 vs. Real Salt Lake. Bwana has missed time this season due to a midfoot sprain.
- Sounders FC managed just one shot on goal, its lowest single-game total since July 7.