A 3-1 victory over Sporting Kansas City gave the Seattle Sounders their eighth consecutive victory. Here are three takeaways from the match.
Seattle has been known for their late-season runs over the years and this season appears to be no different. They were able to get past Sporting Kansas City at home on Saturday for their eighth consecutive victory in Major League Soccer and continue to move up the Western Conference table.
Saturday’s win was good enough for the Seattle Sounders to set the new MLS record for most consecutive wins in the regular season. Earlier this year, not many would have predicted this would be the storyline coming from Washington, but, once again, we were all proved wrong.
SKC brought the game to Seattle in the opening minutes as Diego Rubio took advantage of some miscommunication on the Sounders backline to take a 1-0 lead in just the second minute.
The home side would not remain down a goal for long, though. Raul Ruidiaz dispatched a nice finish in the 12th minute to level the match and it would remain 1-1 for the remainder of the first half.
A Graham Zusi own goal was what proved to be the undoing of SKC as the midfielder deflected a Hary Shipp shot into the back of the net.
SKC’s defensive woes would continue. Ike Opara’s handball would lead to a successful spot-kick conversion by Nicolas Lodeiro.
Despite a two lead goal, the match would not end on a high note for the Sounders as Chad Marshall was sent off for a high challenge on Johnny Russell.
Here are three takeaways from the match.
3. Early goal doesn’t phase Sounders
The early goal by SKC did not put the Sounders in trouble as it appeared it would. A quick response by Ruidiaz and the save by Stefan Frei later in the first half ensured that the match was level heading into halftime.
Given the intensity and pace that KC started the game with, and then being rewarded for that start with the goal, it would have been very easy for the Sounders to crumble against a very good team.
This match could have gone either way but the Sounders showed much more composure for the majority of the 90 minutes to recover from a slow start. It almost felt like a playoff game as the stakes were so high for both clubs. The Sounders have to be happy with the way they displayed resolve and pulled out the win at home.