Gulati: Schmid’s comments ‘nonsense’

Schmid (Getty Images)

By AVI CREDITOR

Seattle Sounders coach Sigi Schmid's assertion that U.S. Soccer is on a calculated mission to halt the Sounders' success in the U.S. Open Cup has made its way to U.S. Soccer's highest-ranking personnel, and it was not received with open arms.

In comments made to the Seattle Times on Sunday, Schmid implied that some sort of conspiracy theory was in the cards after the draw for the next round has the three-time defending champion Sounders on the road should they get by upstart Cal FC Tuesday night. U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati offered a strong retort to Schmid's remarks to SBI on Monday.

"Sigi's comments are completely inappropriate and frankly quite offensive," Gulati told SBI in a phone interview on Monday. "The fact that you lose a few coin flips in a row, that can happen, and that's what's happened here. To imply any kind of conspiracy against Seattle or in favor of D.C. or Kansas City is nonsense. 

"In the same set of comments, Sigi points out that he's been a part of three finals when he hosted a game, including the last two in Seattle. It's nonsense."

Schmid stirred the pot by offering that there is not enough transparency in the coin flip process to determine host sites, a new wrinkle in the tournament this year after teams previously bid for the right to host Open Cup matches. Seattle initially lost the right to host its third round match against the Atlanta Silverbacks but came to an agreement with the NASL side to shift venues. Had Cal FC not upset the Portland Timbers last week, Seattle would have had to go to Jeld-Wen Field for Tuesday's fourth-round match.

Gulati said that there are witnesses and U.S. officials on hand for the coin flip, which is conducted at U.S. Soccer headquarters, and that neither conspiracy nor foul play is a part of the process.

"Obviously the coin is not favorable to us," Schmid told The Times. "It seems to land on the right side for K.C. and for D.C. United, whose president of one club and coach of the other (club) have been on the executive committee of U.S. Soccer — surprisingly.

"Being very frank, I think U.S. Soccer is trying to make it difficult for us to win an Open Cup. It's almost like sometimes I get the feeling like they'd rather not see us win it again, for whatever reasons. Maybe they think it dilutes the value of the cup, or they're getting pressure from others that think Seattle can only win it because they're playing at home.

"All that I know is you compare us and D.C., I mean D.C. has played one away game since 2007. We've played a lot more away games with the second-division Sounders and first division. I know we were in Portland twice, just to think of that one. So it's just something that's there. I think they're making it difficult for us, but it's like, 'OK, they can throw obstacles in the way. We're going to try to jump over each of those hurdles,' and I think we can. And maybe it gives us an 'us against the world' mentality a little bit, because I really think that they would prefer for somebody else to win it."

——————–

What did you think of Schmid's comments? What do you make of Gulati's response? Do you think there's any logic behind what Schmid had to say?

Share your thoughts below. 

This entry was posted in MLS- Seattle Sounders, U.S. Open Cup. Bookmark the permalink.

117 Responses to Gulati: Schmid’s comments ‘nonsense’

  1. giaco says:

    SIGI SIGI SIGI, OINK OINK OINK!

  2. Ben says:

    “Gulati said that there are witnesses and U.S. officials on hand for the coin flip, which is conducted at U.S. Soccer headquarters, and that neither conspiracy nor foul play is a part of the process.”

    Funny comment. The definition of conspiracy is having multiple people involved. So his defense is that multiple were involved with the coin flip. I think transparency is always a good thing. Doing public coin flips helps build confidence and legitimacy.

    Statistically it is a bit odd that Seattle essentially lost something like 4 coin tosses in a row now, but that’s not impossible. Transparency would alleviate the accusation.

  3. Mike says:

    You know what helps build confidence?

    Shutting your mouth.

    You know what does not help build confidence? Suggesting that the Federation is rigging coin flips in order to hurt Seattle who has to play a harrowing away match against the mighty AMATEUR TEAM, Cal FC.

    They freaking hosted the finals last year on that K-Mart pitch of theirs. The fact that they are even allowed to play on that field, which according the official FIFA standards is fit for rec league and amateur matches only, speaks volumes of the bending over backwards that has been done for Seattle.

  4. bmvaughn says:

    Good point, poor delivery

  5. OneLegged says:

    If they made the coin flip public, this all could be avoided.

    Transparency is the only point here.

  6. BSU SC says:

    I think Sigi is still pissed that Bob Bradley got the USMNT job over him 5 years ago.

  7. Four coin tosses and their ensuing results are statistically irrelevant. Nothing odd about it at all. A basic understand of probability and statistics would serve you, and Sigi, well.

  8. 99 says:

    this tournament rocks. i hope it continues to evolve and their scheduling hiccups are fixed (change to home and away fixtures). either way, ill be watching and I’m glad it’s being taken more seriously as the years go on. Wathcing the RSL vs MN Stars last week at a pub in town with 100+ Stars fans was one my top 5 lifetime soccer moments.

  9. Mike says:

    No, this could have been avoided by the Schmid accepting that not everything goes his way.

    You’re suggesting that Schmid is within rational bounds in suggesting that a stroke of bad luck must have been a fix. Ridiculous.

  10. Stateside Supporter says:

    Sigi was quoting from the book of Ferguson, Chapter 1, Verse 1…

  11. Matt says:

    “The new field has met all our expectations,” said Seahawks, Sounders FC and FGI president Peter McLoughlin. “The FIFA 2-Star rating validates the overall quality of the playing surface.”–Highest rating possible.
    Most turf surfaces in MLS are 2-Star quality (Portland, Vancouver, New England). The turf at Olympic Stadium, Montreal’s temporary home venue, probably isn’t a 2-Star surface but (unless I’m mistaken) the expansion team will be moving into a new stadium with a grass surface later this season.

    Also we play a home match against CalFC

    Know your sh*t before opening your mouth. #assclown

  12. chris says:

    this tournament blows

  13. Kejsare says:

    Who ate all the pies?

  14. Yellow Submarine says:

    Extremely tough on the Sounders playing the Final in Seattle and all.

    Extremely.

  15. Ben says:

    I understand statistics, but the likelihood of that happening is 6%. When someone says something with a 6% chance happened I think skepticism is a natural stance to take.

  16. Colin says:

    Heyoooo someone hit a nerve.

  17. dabull says:

    The natural stance to take is to understand that 6% does not equal 0%.

  18. SteveE says:

    Sigi shouldn’t argue all of this, but the coin flip should be on webcast or something. Try to make it a bit of an event.

  19. Mike says:

    If you’re going to call someone an #assclown you damn well better have your own crap right.

    As of last year when Seattle hosted the Open Cup their field FAILED FIFA qualification for the 2 star rating. As a matter of fact, it was less than a month ago that the field even qualified for FIFA professional status.

    Here’s the excerpt from the Seattle Times you ignorant pos.

    “Last year, the turf failed 2-Star testing, meaning it was a 1-Star surface. The language on FIFA’s website describes a 1-Star surface as “the demanding standard for amateur and grassroots football.” Hardly a professional standard

    The field certainly played that way for much of the 2011 season, which accelerated the need for new turf.”

    You Seattle fans are the most annoying freaking people in American soccer. God, no wonder nobody likes you.

  20. guanaco20 says:

    waaaaa

  21. Mike says:

    Yeah, they were being cheated so hard with that.

  22. OneLegged says:

    No, but if it was publicized there could be no complaints.

  23. JRP says:

    I am glad you enjoyed it. The tournament is BS. Top MLS teams that are going to get a Concacaf birth anyway and have nothing to gain but season-end (playoff-ending) fatigue and injuries. For proof see Sounders choking at the end of the season for the past three years. It isn’t worth the reward. It is too many added games. At the same time, I loved watching the MN Stars play their guts out. They killed RSL. Legitimately. But I don’t want to see RSL add 8+ Open Cup games to a crowded schedule.

  24. Mike says:

    Man, people will complain about anything and everything they can lol

  25. Jason says:

    After the Rapids lost 10 “coin-flips” in a row dating back to 2008 before winning the flip to host this year’s quarterfinals I do think there was more to it in prior years than random chance (Those coin-flips were for hosting the MLS play-in games that were supposedly randomly determined, I understand that prior to this year the actual USOC games were done by blind bid).

    That said, the coach of the team that regularly bought hosting rights the last 3+ years shouldn’t be complaining when a statistically insignificant 4 flips went against them.

  26. Chepe says:

    Was the location of the finals determined by highest bid or by coin toss? I seem to recall the final being awarded on a bid basis but I could be wrong. If so, the fact that Seattle hosted two of the finals is irrelevant to Sigi’s point (unless Chicago or Columbus thinks they had a superior bid). I’m sure it is highly unlikely that the flips are rigged and, as seen by the NBA draft lottery, even a live drawing will leave room for conspiracies. That said, doing the drawings live would certainly be interesting to watch and couldn’t hurt from a transparency point of view.

  27. CrazyJon85 says:

    You’re an idiot. the rapids lost 11 coin tosses in a row, it happens. Now stop talking about how MLS and US soccer hate Seattle.

  28. CrazyJon85 says:

    jason it was 11

  29. Brain Guy says:

    Seattle complaining about USOC game sites is like Bill Gates complaining about losing in a lottery. They get so used to buying what they want that they can’t understand it when things don’t go their way.

  30. Mig22 says:

    I love this. F’n awesome that peeps are so wound up about his comments. I could less about the result but nothing is better for a sport/tourney than controversy. Ink is ink.

    And yeah, why not have it certified by Price Waterhouse or do it publicly? Don’t be Nascar with their back room rulings and rule changes, etc.

  31. ben in el cajon says:

    Sigi is just trying to get his guys up for the game with artificial emotion.

  32. Matt says:

    When did you make your comment today or back in 2011!? Your living in the past Mike….its 2012….#stillaassclown
    Your a fan of?

  33. Nic says:

    Ok, here’s how it is. If you want to avoid someone confronting you when something doesn’t go their way, have transperancy. In this case, show a webcast of it and none of this starts in the first place. Do I believe that this could have happened with the actual flip of the coin, yes, however with the federation not doing ANYTHING towards trying to create transparency, it makes things look a little shifty.

    The pitch at Qwest was a 1 star pitch for part of last year, yes. Guess what, if you want to get upset that USSoccer allowed the game to be played there, then talk to them, not Seattle. Also, if USSoccer wanted to turn down the money we paid to host the game, that would have been fine too. We won our first USOC in DC, so I’m sure we had it in the bag either way.

    The funny thing about the argument over the pitch is that there are PLENTY of teams in this tournament that play games at pitches that are not 2 star rated. I don’t see you complaining that other teams play on these types of pitches for their games and get eliminated….

  34. ETJ says:

    Ives,

    This is why we need a ‘like’ option on comments

  35. Jason says:

    But the 11th was losing the right to host the Sounders in an actual USOC game in 2007, so that wasn’t a coin flip that was losing out on the bid (if the Rapids bid at all).

  36. del says:

    Seattle is just plain ridiculous, they have such a bs entitlement attitude.

    Seattle has hosted almost every Open Cup game and I would say they are Favorited too much.

  37. Jason says:

    10, the 11th was a bidding game not a coin flip game (2007 against Seattle).

  38. EZ2Bgreen says:

    Much ado about nothing. Sigi throws some flip comments (yeah, that’s a pun, son) out there and SG takes the bait.

    As far as the OC being BS, or inconvenient for MLS teams. It certainly is the latter. We tend to forget that this thing is not about MLS and was a mature tournament before anybody involved in MLS was born.

    At any rate. This has definitely been an eventful edition, and we’re only in the fourth round!

    Seattle is the heel in this fight. It just makes in a whole lot of fun, doesn’t it? If the Sounders win it, the fervor to knock them out in 2013 will be fantastic. If they go out, and let’s face it, the odds are against them, think of the joy and happiness that will spread throughout MLS. It’s really a win-win.

    This CalFC match is going to be a stunner. I’m wearing rave green but I’m not immune to the drama that the amateur (sort of) squad has generated with their stunning, and I think, damning, achievements. I’ll give them a standing ovation before the game, as my feelings about it afterwards will no doubt be mixed, whichever way it goes.

  39. Fred says:

    Just post the drive via USTREAM or something. Video documentation a freaking intern could set it up for USSF. It would promote the game and the draw.

  40. WileyJ says:

    +1

    Sigi is trying to stir the pot. Amp up his team & at the same time cast a light on the tournament/get people talking.

    What’s so wrong with transparency? It will only strengthen & legitimize the competition.

  41. Jerry Green says:

    *post the draw I think you meant to say

    Seattle fans are berated repeatedly as the worst in the league, maybe we all need to just take a friggin chill pill and look in the mirror of the interwebs.

  42. WileyJ says:

    +1. Spot on, Sigi is neither stupid or a tool.

  43. Ben says:

    As a Seattle fan, I can understand why the Sounders may not be considered the best spokesperson for transparency in the USOC, having been the beneficiaries of the sealed bid process more often than not. And I’ll agree that a conspiracy is highly unlikely here. But still, Sigi is right that this tournament needs more transparency. Doing frequent bracket restructuring and determining the home field like they do seems to delegitimize the tournament.

  44. Jerry Green says:

    Have you never seen a coach’s interview especially Sigi’s. He can hint at things in the media rather than come out right and say its fixed. The damage was done and I see USSF posting the draw. This comment isn’t new he’s said it before.

  45. Michael says:

    Agreed.

    Secret coin flips help no one.

    Gulati, put your money ($75 for a cheap video camera if the USSF can’t dig one up) where your mouth is.

    On the other hand, this may be the most passionate a USSF official has been about the US Open Cup…well, ever.

  46. Jerry Green says:

    Yeah 2009 in Washington……. DC. It was all about $ for USSF in 2010 and 2011 and Seattle played within the rules.

  47. Charles says:

    I tend to assume it is non-sense, but…..

    A cheap phone and a live link solves that. There is only one reason for it not to be perfectly transparent.

  48. rke says:

    Rosencrantz: [flips coin which lands as 'heads'] 78 in a row. A new record, I imagine.
    Guildenstern: Is that what you imagine? A new record?
    Rosencrantz: Well…
    Guildenstern: No questions? Not a flicker of doubt?
    Rosencrantz: I could be wrong.

  49. Robinswood says:

    Actually, it is not. Statistical probability in this case is not based upon the mean number of attempts, but merely as a one-time attempt. The odds are the same no matter how many times you toss that coin: 50/50. It’s 50/50 the first time, it’s 50/50 the 100th time.

  50. Greg says:

    Now Now Mike – Nobody likes Sounders fans because we are better than you. So GFY.

    You can complain about a nice field all you want, but you probably haven’t ever stepped foot on anything that your co-rec league hasn’t rented from a junior high. It’s a stupid complaint.

  51. Michael says:

    “Seattle who has to play a harrowing away match against the mighty AMATEUR TEAM, Cal FC.”

    Seattle will be hosting Cal FC by default. Cal FC couldn’t afford to bid. But the USSF won’t tell you that because they work secretly.

    So what did we learn? Perhaps that shutting one’s mouth is valuable at other times as well. ;)

  52. Mike says:

    “They freaking hosted the finals last year on that K-Mart pitch of theirs. ”

    Hi, this conversation is about the Federation allegedly rigging everything against Seattle. So my comment is quite relevant.

  53. Mike says:

    Sarcasm man, sarcasm.

  54. Brian D says:

    I was waiting for this. Bravo, sir.

  55. Matt says:

    last year, LAST YEAR…..The field is now 2star….stay relevant.
    Also your a fan of who?

  56. Rick says:

    Yes, big conspiracy against Seattle. Portland deliberately lost to Cal FC, the Sounders next USOC opponent.

  57. Erik says:

    All this for a reserve tournament (unless you are a lower division club in which case it is awesome). Sigi is just afraid that this year they may not win the only trophy they’ve been able to win ($$$).

  58. Diablo says:

    Sigi, the last time we invited you to the coin flip you ate all the damn crab cakes. From now on, we will flip our coin behind closed doors.

  59. fischy says:

    “I mean D.C. has played one away game since 2007″….

    Almost all of those games were played when hosting was part of a bidding process, not a coin flip. That’s how Seattle got to host the finals. There was a coin flip for home field against Richmond this year and DC lost. ON the other hand,m Seattle was able to buy hosting rights even after losing a coin flip.

    Sigi is either an uninformed jackass, or a lying hypocrite.

  60. Adam says:

    You know how to fix this? Have a ping pong ball draw.

  61. bigprof says:

    next thing you know, sigi will be telling us who the Zodiac killer was, or how we never landed moon and it was all in a studio

  62. Ben says:

    Some people win the lottery despite the odds, but you don’t trust that they won until you see the ticket.

  63. Ben says:

    It’s still a set. The fact that on any given coin toss it is 50/50 is true, but statistically, if you repeat a 50/50 event enough, you’ll average out. The sounders have lost 4 coin tosses in a row. That is still statistically unlikely.

    By your understanding the following video occurrence would not be surprising because every successive flip is a 50/50 chance, so throwing flipping a coin 100 times and it landing heads would not surprise you?

    link to youtube.com

    Around the 3 minute mark you get some actual dialoge.

    Anyways, to think that is absurd. If there was a set containing the data of all coin tosses the distribution should be roughly 50/50.

  64. Mark Rice says:

    Allegations of shady dealings within US Soccer? Sunil Gulati, who is above reproach, is offended by the comment? The president doth protest too much, methinks…probably not in this case! The issue isn’t that USOC is rigged, it’s that there’s not a lot of credibility anywhere in FIFA these days. So, instead of declaring yourself wounded by questioning comments, perhaps you should avoid doing things behind closed doors in the first place! SG has got to go, what a tool!

  65. Scott says:

    It would be a “bit” of an event. A little bitty bit. If someone asked me “do you want to grab a beer and watch this year’s Open Cup draw?”" I would punch them in the face. Only once, though, they did include beer. Perhaps if Sigi could win the bigger tourney’s, he would care less about this one. Right now, it is all he has… BTW, before someone calls me out, I do like Seattle, tend to prefer RSL, not a big Galaxy fan and live in the Southeast so I don’t get a team of my own to root for. I think that covers all of the standard gotchas.

  66. Scott says:

    Having said that Steve, I was not trying to bust on you. I had thought the same thing. The web cam, not the event part. Who knows, someone other than Sigi might watch it. After all, some people watch bowling. I know, I know…bowling troll.

  67. Scott says:

    …because you could never fake something on video…like a moon landing? If you are keeping up, I stole that from an earlier post.

  68. Scott says:

    Sunils remarks hide the fact that he is secretly thinking “who knew anyone cared?”

  69. RLW2020 says:

    the real conspiracy is how they got so many home games in the past years, i guess they just bought that tho..

  70. Chris says:

    Sigi had made comment about the visibility and way they were handling the brackets before and nothing changed (link to seattletimes.nwsource.com)…so ramp it up to the next level.

    US Soccer had posted a bracket and then completely changed it – why?

    Then they have coin flips where some teams are losing all the time, and some teams are winning all the time. Is it possible – yes, is it probable – no.

    It’s quite easy to change this – put in visibility. Bracket it from the beginning in one push – it saves them time and makes things easier to understand for everyone. Imagine if I was a team and I could actually know before the tournament was even going to start where and when I may travel depending on what happened with the games. Wouldn’t that be nice?

    If you don’t openly criticize no change will come. He did it nicely at least once, no notice.

  71. Mark Rice says:

    Seattle followed the rules, just like DC, and did what gave them the best chances to win. Instead of whinning maybe your team should have done the same…oh wait, Seattle can afford it and you can’t!

  72. This Guy. SBI Mafia Original says:

    The ping-pong ball machine will cost much more than the USOC revenues. Seattle supporters just need to quit trolling the MLS.

  73. This Guy. SBI Mafia Original says:

    Sounders supporters are MLS’s Laker fans.

  74. Seriously? says:

    Coach makes vague accusation in order to try to set up an us against the world mentality for his team? Gee, that’s never happened before, especially not for a team that will be so heavily favored he might worry some players could have trouble thinking the game might be difficult. The odds of it happening are around 6%, or about 1 in 16 or 17, not that hard to conceive of – it’s hardly a 1 in 1000 or even 1 in 100 chance. Such a non-story. Who’s the one more likely to have a hidden plan in this story, USSF or Sigi?

  75. Scott A says:

    Sigi forgets how many coin tosses in a row Seattle–and DC–have won.

  76. Sea-Tac Sounder says:

    Reminder to everyone: DC United hasn’t played an away US Open Cup match since 2007.

    Explain that Sunil Gulati.

    You can stream games from halfway around the world on US Soccer but can’t stream US Open Cup draw from your offices in Chicago?

    I smell B.S.

  77. Sea-Tac Sounder says:

    Gulati has a lot of explaining to do. None of which has done.

    Simply calling something a “conspiracy theory” doesn’t mean a conspiracy doesn’t exist.

    Gulati needs to….

    1. Explain why he was not present at the US Open Cup final here in Seattle in 2010 and 2011 to present the trophy. He had been to every final up to that point.

    2. Explain why Seattle (or Portland for that matter) has yet to host a US Mens National Team match with the “A” team. It’s not the distance (there have been plenty of matches played in Los Angeles), it’s not the turf, there have been quite a few appearances at Gillette in Foxborough, Mass. Seattle would almost guarantee a majority of supporters FOR THE US – Unlike playing matches in DC, Houston, LA, MA and NJ where the US National Team plays “away” matches where opposing team supporters outnumber US ones. It is not the turf, it is not the travel. So then Sunil, what is it?

    3. Explain why can’t the US Open Cup draw be streamed live on USSoccer.com? They stream matches there, often from the other side of the world but they can’t stream a damned draw from their own offices at “Soccer House” in Chicago?

    4. Why did US Soccer threaten to sue Josh Hakala who owned the domain name USOpenCup.com if he didn’t surrender it to US Soccer? Josh operates TheCup.us – the most comprehensive site covering the US Open Cup and its history yet the USOpenCup.com domain name you FORCED him to fork over now points to a singular, seldom updated page at USSoccer.com. Josh Hakala has done more to promote this tournament than anyone at Soccer House in Chicago. How did your actions above serve to promote interest in this 99 year old tournament?

    5. Explain why he appeared to refuse to shake Adrian Hanauer’s hand at the trophy presentation at RFK stadium in 2009 when the Sounders won the US Open Cup the first time.

    Sorry but Gulati and US Soccer’s past actions, dubious statements, disinterest in the US Open Cup (it took Sigi’s comments to even get him to say ANYTHING about this 99th US Open Cup, they NEVER talk about it or promote it) serve only to bolster Sigi’s comments.

    Sigi Schmid is a smart man who has been around the US Soccer scene a long time. If he believes something stinks, I don’t need to smell it myself. I’ll take his word for it as Gulati is one shifty dude.

    I’m with Sigi on this.

    “When it’s US versus THEM, you can always count on me! …..”

  78. Erik says:

    Just amazing that we are giving this much time to the freaking US Open Cup. Who cares?!

  79. ColorWheelie says:

    God Bless Sounders fans.
    Good lord.
    Your coach said something stupid. Swallow it. No one has made more from the shadiness of this event than you.

  80. jimluk says:

    Wow, Sigi steps it up in his battle for MLS Blowhard of the year award, what will Arena’s counter punch be?

  81. Andrew says:

    Seconded.

  82. Andrew says:

    Seattle’s still played most Open Cup games at home. I doubt there’s a conspiracy to make Seattle play away… Sigi, you’re not ENTITLED to home games every round.

  83. Diablo says:

    I’ll go ahead and answer your questions since Gulati never will.

    1) Because it is the US Open Cup. It doesn’t really matter and Gulati doesn’t really care. The only mystery here is why they actually give a Champions League spot to the winner.

    2) Because it is Seattle. Seattle doesn’t really matter and Gulati doesn’t really care. Throw in weather and plastic grass and its really not worth the trouble.

    3) Because it is the US Open Cup and it doesn’t really matter and Gulati doesn’t really care. Again, just be happy they are throwing a Champions League spot at this tournament.

    4) Really? Does this even need to be addressed?

    5) In all likelihood it was a simple awkward moment. Maybe Hanauer is a a-hole. Not really a federal issue.

    It is YOU versus THEM because that is the psych games your coach is trying to play to make sure his team does not take Cal FC lightly. I thinking you are swinging a little hard from Sigi’s nuts.

  84. Brian says:

    Except they haven’t won sh*t. USOC doesn’t count.

  85. Dale Chihuly says:

    When even Gulati- as the president of USSF – can’t even find time to even show up to give out the US Open Cup trophy… now that is lame.

  86. Eddie Vedder says:

    No Sh^t
    The press is drooling all over Wynalda’s sleeve

    Sigi is running interference playing the bad guy

    It’s gonna be epic,, and the best part…

    the Timbers are OUT

  87. solles says:

    only in shittle do they calculate the percentages of coin flips.

  88. solles says:

    Such a beautiful summary of why Sounders fans are perhaps the most annoying people on the planet… a bleeding masters dissertation on the subject of a coin flip, please do us a favor and find a different way to compensate for your feelings of inadequacy as a city than trolling the planet.

  89. Pp says:

    He’s saying Seattle seems to lose the coin flips more often than they win them..which is correct. Whether or not you like it is totally irrelevant.

  90. Pp says:

    It sure does count.. All those trophies prove it.. Don’t be mad yo.

  91. Pp says:

    Don’t be mad.. It’s just a game.. Have some fun..

  92. Pp says:

    Shady when they went to DC and beat United for the cup in 09? By the way he brought all this up this week to make you super jealous of all three trophies Seattle has won. It’s personal, suck it ;)

  93. Pp says:

    So FIFA doesn’t like the fake grass we play on, big deal.. Better than the mud bowls of the epl.

  94. Pp says:

    Gotta do something in between our fits of laughter over your “team”, no?

  95. Pp says:

    Someone is too dense…lol

  96. Nate Dollars says:

    no, he’s saying that USSF is trying to “make it difficult for [seattle] to win an Open Cup”, implying that there’s a conspiracy against seattle and for DC (and KC, apparently).

    agree with fischy: he’s either dumb, or a liar.

  97. sasha says:

    Fire that fat stupid shmuck

  98. common sense says:

    As a totally impartial observer who has no idea at all whether there might be any truth to Schmid’s suspicions, I find it amazing that US Soccer is (if I am reading this story correctly) conducting an important “coin flip” behind closed doors with only a limited number of people present and no video cameras present. And usually when top officials or politicians conducting business behind closed doors are criticized and then respond by indignantly claiming they are offended and calling the accuser a conspiracy theorist, it is often the case that they have something to hide and are trying to throw the spotlight back on the accuser.

    There is a simple solution for US Soccer to remove by a shadow of doubt that the coin flip is fair and square: Allow team representatives and journalists with video cameras to witness the coin flip. When you think about, there would only be one logical explanation for US Soccer to oppose such as a common sense solution.

  99. Sea-Tac Sounder says:

    Well said common sense.

    US Soccer thinks we’re all naive enough to believe that they, an organization which turned a blind eye to corruption at the CONCACAF and FIFA levels would somehow be above corruption themselves.

    If there is no conspiracy then show the damned coin flip live with journalists present.

  100. JRP says:

    If they had video people would say they rigged the camera. It is just insecure people with wild imaginations and victim complexes that come up with crap like this.

  101. Courtney Love says:

    Maybe what the Sigster is trying to say is that USSF is using MLS sides to enrich the little guys?

  102. Suckers... duh says:

    ever wonder….? since the Sounders have hosting rights they may be reaping some reward from the TV revenue tonight…

  103. Cavan says:

    DC United lost their DP due to injury in an Open Cup game last year and they’re still taking it seriously this year. I can’t wait to go to tonight’s game!

  104. Sounders fan since 1974 says:

    The odds of a coin toss going against any one side that many times must be astronomical.

    At least as high as the odds of the US Men not qualifying for the Olympics.

    Oh, wait, um………

  105. Sounders fan since 1974 says:

    Game isn’t even shown on TV. Only a webcast…

  106. ColorWheelie says:

    Congrats on the win in 09. Way to go. Your coach still said something stupid.

  107. ColorWheelie says:

    Fox Soccer barely qualifies as television, but it does.

  108. Sounders fan since 1974 says:

    Oops…

    Never seen a preliminary round SSFC Open Cup match on anything but a webcast.

    Cal FC must be quite the underdog story nationally to grab that kind of attention. Just hope we can avoid the embarrassment that Portland had last week.

  109. Paul says:

    Lotta stupid in this whole thing.

    1) Anyone who thinks that Sunil Gulati is beyond corruption or resting a thumb on the scales is ignorant or insane. Soccer at his level is a mess and we all know it.

    2) Sigi’s comments started with “I think US Soccer is trying to make it difficult to win an Open Cup.” That’s entirely true; the well-publicized reason for the new hosting-determination procedure was in answer to the complaints of how Seattle was hosting a bunch of games in earlier years.

    In other words, they SAID the reason they were switching to a (supposedly) random draw was because it was “too easy” for a big club willing to spend the dough (ie, Seattle) to host. That means everyone ADMITTED they wanted to make it more difficult on Seattle. Sigi’s 100% right.

    3) When he was discussing the coin flip, he was laughing. Clearly he was partly kidding, but then pivoted to his MAIN point, which is that the coin flip is not transparent.

    Gulati complains that there are multiple people watching it- who, Sunil? Other US Soccer employees? Again, while joking a bit about the odds against Seattle losing every flip, the truth of what Sigi was saying is evident- the USOC hosting procedure this year was not transparent.

    4) The rest of Sigi’s comments were plainly in favor of continuing to grow and boost the USOC as a tournament. Read them!

    5) Many of the rest of the comments in this thread are just stupid. Yes, the turf here in Seattle (about 300 yards away from my balcony!) was crap last year- it had originally attained a FIFA 2-star rating, then fell to a 1-star rating over time.

    The turf now, though, is pretty damn nice, because it’s NEW. 2-star rated, meaning World Cup games can be played on it.

    Yes, Sigi’s partly pulling people’s chains. He’s probably trying to create a bit of a diversion- good coaches do that, you know.

    The reality is that if you read all his comments in context, and include the fact that he was clearly joking and laughing during some of them, what you really see is that the Open Cup has been growing in status; that Sigi supports that fully and would like it to be even bigger; and that he thinks the lack of transparency in the process to determine the host field sucks.

    Can anyone here truly disagree with those actual points? (I know, of course you can, because we’re soccer fans and running on emotions and prejudice, not facts and logic.)

  110. SMc says:

    Boy do I love a good storm in a tea cup.

    Sigi’s being Sigi, good and bad. I’m glad he cares about Open Cup. And he’s been around long enough to know that the group he implicates have massaged venue selections for political and marketing reasons in the past. (Rapids lost 10 flips in a row?)

    Having said that, US soccer should absolutely webcast the flip. MAKE it newsworthy!

    First, they should create a comically oversized coin with Sigis’s face and scarf on one side, and his considerable posterior on the flipside. Heck, name the thing after Schmid.

    Then make the flip look blatantly, obviously faked. Like… show it spinning then abruptly cut the tape and show it flat on the table, with Seattle losing.

    For the six or eight of of who would give a crap… ain’t we got fun!

  111. SMc says:

    P.S. Since we got on the topic: Can’t all of you awesome NW soccer fans use your awesome fan power to get grass friggin’ fields? Yes, with mud and all? It would do a ton for the legitimacy of our league. I adore MLS and am psyched for the addition of your teams but FWIW (I know, I know) I won’t watch any games played at Seattle, Portland, Vancouver, New England…

  112. Sounders fan since 1974 says:

    We tried, really, we did.

    We, the soccer people of Seattle/King County, were sold a grass field when we voted for the new stadium.

    “Oh, yes, it will have to be grass so we can get an MLS team here.”

    Yeah, right…

    One Mr. Allen got the votes the field surface changed.

    Without the soccer community vote the Seahawks would still be playing in the Kingdome.

  113. Das Meister says:

    If its a choice between Sigi Schmidt – a guy who leads the best attended American soccer club or the nitwit, shifty eyed, two-faced President /partner of NE Revolution … I’d pick Seattle’s best (or better).

    Gulati has done nothing to promote the Open Cup, not done anything to enhance the history and fabric of the game in America. It took him two tries to land an international coach for the MNT.

    If you have ever seen him walking along the hallways, he is the guy looking around to see who wants to punch him in the face. (and there are a lot of takers)

    Soccer is the only American sport that can have more than one competition for its pro teams – the more , the better I say.

    Gulati is a criminal in the FIFA element. Just put the draw on live stream already. Even if Sigi’s rants are baseless, it helps the game all together.

    If not, then I’ll go watch European leagues.

  114. Kenneth Barr says:

    Let’s see, Sigi, you play before the highest attendances in MLS while the other guys play before a few hundred a match. You’d think US Soccer would fix it so you played ALL of your cup matches at home. Have you been talking to Trump lately?

  115. Hattrick says:

    Actually I think the odds are 12.5% = .50 x .50 x .50 = .125 for three flips of the coin. for four flips its .0625

    Put it all on TV and stream it on the web then their is transparency !!!!

  116. Joamiq says:

    Dude, you got owned. Time to shut up.

  117. Andrea says:

    “It seems to land on the right side for K.C. and for D.C. United, whose president of one club and coach of the other (club) have been on the executive committee of U.S. Soccer — surprisingly.”
    Yes, transparency is needed. It looks bad to everyone when you see it from that perspective.