4. Senior team ties 2-2 in final preseason match
Still on the subject of Miguel Ibarra, he got an earlier than expected opportunity to play after Danny Leyva was sent off in the eighth minute of the preseason match against Club Atletico Zacatepec. (Due to the nature of the contest, it was decided to keep both teams at 11 players.) This allowed the Sounders to highlight their versatility as Ibarra replaced Cristian Roldan on the right-wing, with the latter moving back to his old position in central midfield.
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Fielding a strong lineup, the Sounders showed what they were capable of by flying out to a two-nil lead in the first half courtesy of strikes from Raul Ruidiaz and Jordan Morris. The early signs look good for Ruiadiaz and Morris, who are both coming off excellent years in 2019 but still have even more to offer.
Yeimar Gomez Andrade made his Sounders debut in central defense alongside Xavier Arreaga, which will arguably by the preferred pairing during the coming season. The fact Seattle allowed two second-half goals to finish with a 2-2 scoreline should not be a concern, and not just because the second came via the penalty spot; Gomez Andrade and Arreaga are only just getting started and will improve as they spend more time playing together.
As a final note, Nouhou’s contribution to the goal by Ruiadiz highlighted his ability in attack and strengthened his claim for more regular action in 2020. He only started nine MLS games last season after previously being in the starting XI 23 times a year earlier. He will be looking for a regular run with Brad Smith no longer in town.