Johnson header lifts Sounders over Timbers in front of record crowd

Clint_82513                                                                                Photo by Jane Gersovich/JaneG Photography

By JASON MITCHELL

SEATTLE – All eyes were on Clint Dempsey. But anyone who has watched Eddie Johnson since he joined the Seattle Sounders knew to keep tracking that lone golden dome as it zipped around the pitch Sunday night.

It took an hour. An hour of increasingly physical play, Sounders buildups full of false hope, promising counterattacks from the visitors, near misses from both sides.

But in the 60th minute Johnson got just enough on a Mauro Rosales free kick to send a glancing header past goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts and put the Seattle Sounders up 1-0 over the Portland Timbers. It was Johnson’s sixth goal in just nine matches against Pacific Northwest rivals Vancouver and Portland.

“Eddie does what he does,” said Dempsey after his first match in Seattle, “he comes up in big moments and helps you score.”

The lead held over the final 30 minutes, lifting the Sounders over their fiercest rivals, edging them back into the playoff mix, and welcoming Dempsey to town in front of 67,385 at CenturyLink Field.

Andrew Jean-Baptiste nearly equalized with a snap header from the top of the six-yard box late in stoppage time, but Michael Gspurning came up with the save to preserve the win. Gspurning also made a fingertip save on a Darlington Nagbe shot in the 88th minute.

The crowd was the second largest in history for a stand-alone MLS match, the largest ever for a Sounders’ game.

“I still pinch myself every time I see that,” said Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid about the relatively few times the team has opened the entire stadium.

The victory pushes the Sounders (11-8-4, 37 points) into fifth place in the Western Conference and extends their home unbeaten streak to 10 games (7-0-3).

It also gives Seattle a 3-1-3 record against the Timbers since Portland joined the league two seasons ago.

“We’re always gonna be the team to beat,” said starting center back and long-time Sounder Zach Scott. “They can say there’s a changing of the guard. They can say we’re a group of stars and they’re the team, but in the end we’re the ones that are going to come out victorious.”

The Sounders have now won four of their last five matches, and with Obafemi Martins out with an ankle injury on Sunday have yet to play at full strength since signing Dempsey.

The victory also moves Seattle into first place in the Cascadia Cup, the fan-sponsored annual competition with Portland and Vancouver for regional bragging rights.

The Timbers (9-4-12, 39 points) played a midweek match and came into the night missing Diego Chara to suspension and Will Johnson to injury. While still in sole possession of fourth place in the conference, Portland now finds itself only two points ahead of Seattle and FC Dallas for the last playoff spot in the West. The Timbers have won just once in their last six matches (1-2-3) and with the loss fell to 0-1-3 in the Cascadia Cup.

Portland head coach Caleb Porter saw positives in the loss, but also lamented his team’s continuing struggles with set pieces.

“We’re going to continue to be in every single game we play, and not just hoping to win, but expecting to win,” Porter said. “I thought the performance was good, the mentality was good. I thought especially in the first half, we controlled large periods [of the game]. I thought at times we were the better team. But, in the end, we’re going to keep suffering if we don’t find goals and if we don’t continue to sort out set pieces.”

Defender Michael Harrington agreed.

“We just need to be a little bit more ruthless on both sides of the ball in the boxes,” said the 27-year-old left back.

Both teams missed on multiple first-half chances, with the Timbers controlling possession and repeatedly threatening through Diego Valeri’s midfield distribution.

In just the fourth minute, Seattle defender DeAndre Yedlin cleared a Jack Jewsbury header off the line. Barely two minutes later Shalrie Joseph found himself unmarked at the back post on a Brad Evans free kick, but slammed a header into the FieldTurf and well wide.

In the 16th minute, Ryan Johnson ran onto a gorgeous Valeri through-ball, splitting Seattle’s central defenders to get himself alone against Gspurning. But the 6-foot-5 Austrian got low in a hurry, charging to smother the ball at Johnson’s feet.

Valeri, brilliant throughout the first half, nearly scored himself in the 35th minute, collecting a pass from Khalif Alhassan and slapping the right post from 22 yards out.

A game full of missed chances, until it wasn’t.

“This is a game of moments,” said Porter. “You lose a moment, you lose a game. You get punished. It’s cruel.”

Looking forward, the Sounders travel to Ohio to face the Columbus Crew (8-12-5, 29 points) on Saturday. Portland visits league-leading Real Salt Lake (13-8-6, 45 points) on Friday. The Sounders and Timbers play for a third and final time on Oct. 13 at Jeld-Wen Field in Portland.

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95 Responses to Johnson header lifts Sounders over Timbers in front of record crowd

  1. Travis says:

    Was overall an even game, both teams wasted some quality chances and Seattle were saved by the bar once. The first half was pure entertainment and a great advertisement for MLS, second half turned a bit thuggish but that happens in rivalry games. Seattle needs to keep Joseph away from the field, he was incredibly bad tonight. Thought Ricketts was really poor tonight for Portland as well, not sure what he was doing a couple times. Nagbe has really put it together more this year, a couple of his runs really put Seattle in trouble. Big result for Seattle, if they can get going on a run they are in a nice spot to move up.

    • TomG says:

      Not the highest skill level you will ever see in an MLS match, but the pace, the intensity and the atmosphere were all of the charts. Deuce looked good, especially in setting up his teammates, but his timing is mist a hair off. He will get there soon.

    • Gary Page says:

      I vote this as the best comment here. To which I would add Valeri looks to have the makings of a great player. And the entry of Rosales changed the game completely to Seattle’s favor. Wish that Stu Holden would get and keep healthy, we need a playmaker like him, as good as the Latins I mentioned.

  2. Jay says:

    The game was OK. I was more impressed by Portland then Seattle especially in the first half. Overall great crowd, horrible start time, and ok game all in all a typical MLS game.

    • Pingunça says:

      “horrible start time”..

      Cascadia runs on West coast time.

      • Jack says:

        7pm on a sunday is still a horrible start time. For the biggest TV audience you’re better off at 3 or 4pm

        • timmytwoshoezzz says:

          you’re talking about the same league that had their two biggest stars (Donovan and Beckham) playing on the same team in LA that routinely played their games at 10:00 p.m. or later on the east coast. It’s almost as if MLS has given up on trying to boost tv ratings.

        • Knuckles says:

          You’re right. Next time we’ll totally consult you. Oh, wait, no one cares what you think, particularly here on the West Coast.

          • Josh says:

            Seriously, you would think East Coast folks don’t know there are people living out here. WTF? The game was in prime time for the region in which it took place. Which, as some seem not to understand, is where millions of people, many of them in the hometowns of the clubs involved, happen to live.

            I mean really, duh.

  3. MLS fan says:

    1) Dempsey not worth DP money
    2) kah should have seen red
    3) Alonso got away w way 2 many yellow offenses
    4) MLS refereeing has long way 2 go
    5) MLS needs more rivalries

    • Jay says:

      I agree that Dempsey was invisible…

      • TomG says:

        That’s because you were watching the Revs game. He doesn’t play for them anymore.

        • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

          LOL. Dempsey has opened up the field for the rest of the Sounders, without a doubt. They used to say that about NKufo, but I thought that was wrong.

          Rosales will gain the most from this. No more keying on him and figuring the rest of the team will not get it done.

      • Gary Page says:

        Dempsey had an overhead kick that was on frame but blocked by a defender, a shot into the left corner that was pushed aside by the diving keeper and a pass to EJ that would have sent him through one on one only EJ was a bit offside. Dempsey should have shot instead of p@ssed. Only Messi scores every game. It was not a great game for Dempsey, but the expectations of some people are ridiculous. As the announcers pointed out, it took Cahill and Henry almost a whole season to get used to the league and start to become productive. This was Dempsey’s third game and in the first he came on as a late sub.

    • JAY NT says:

      yes to #s 2 & 3

    • Dos says:

      He is in pre season shape . . . his legs are probably halfway where they need to be. He is on a field with guys who have been humming along for months.

      take a step back and think about that . . . he literally just joined the team, is getting a feel for the new teammates and playing style, and hadnt played a game on that surface yet.

    • Rabbit says:

      I think 5) is the only one I agree with you on.

      2) Kah was acting like an a-h@le, but I personally would have hated to see the game changed so dramatically through a sending off. I don’t think his challenges, or his knee, warranted red. Plus the Timbers got punished anyway when his foul led to the free kick that led to the goal.

      3) You’re implying that Alonso should have been red carded. Again, to change the dynamic so much by putting one team on the power play for the rest of the game, I just don’t agree with. Of course there are certain circumstances where a red has to be issued, but for me, they should be egregious circumstances.

      4) I liked the ref. He let them play. Hate refs that pull out cards every 5 seconds, INCLUDING for flops and dives and embellishments. This guy wasn’t having it.

      1) Not even going to humor this one.

  4. TomG says:

    Totally sick cover picture by the way.

  5. Cougardave says:

    Unbelievable atmosphere tonight. It was just as charged as the Portland game last year at Centurylink field. This was by far my favorite match of the year. MLS needs more of these kinds of rivalry games. Timbers looked dangerous in the first half, but Sounders were dominant in the second half. Gspurling was the man of the match. But most importantly it just feels good to be to Timbers.

  6. John says:

    Sounders just need to find some more width on the field. Its always going to be hard against teams as well organized as Portland or Houston with everyone in the middle. Sounders looked much stronger when Rosales starting hitting in a few crosses. That threat pulled off the fullback creating space for everyone else. I think they’ll figure it out.

    • Tom says:

      With Chara out, Seattle was trying to play through the middle. I agree they were more effective in attack going wide when Rosales came in and Evans went center-mid.

  7. louis z says:

    I like the love taps that Dempsey gave Kah, specially the one after EJ scored. Minds tend to remember moments like this for the next “get-together”

  8. Jack says:

    first MLS game i’ve watched this season. And i could barely get through it to be honest. Part of the reason was that horrible carpet they play on. Don’t tell me it doesn’t affect the play. It does. Players rarely go for a tackle on that carpet. If you do you get your whole leg scrapped up.

    Sounders need a SSS really bad.

    • Brett says:

      It’s hard to play a beautiful game on such an ugly surface, but watching the game the struggles weren’t down to the field in my estimation. Too many players running into the same areas, not enough players running to open up space. Dempsey in particular was a sort of wrecking ball just charging into different areas with or without the ball and running into his own teammates.

    • Matt C says:

      Jack, couldn’t agree more. Over the years i’ve tried to watch Seattle matches but the play is just really hard on the eyes. I have not been able to watch a full match despite some real talent on the field.

      Kudos to the fans and managment out there, but that carpet is horrible. Finely weighted thru-balls are almost endangered species in Seattle.

    • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

      My new name says it all. IF you don’t like it quit watching, no one in Seattle is going to miss you.

      • Rory says:

        But the real problem is a SSS isn’t going to solve the problem that it’s really dang hard to grow and maintain grass fields in Seattle. Instead of focusing on how hot it would be in the south, maybe MLS should have acknowledged that turf fields are going to be a constant problem in the Pac NW.

        • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

          Yeah, the other problem is that Chelsea would trade stadiums with us in a second. It is one of the best stadiums in the world.

          They aren’t going to build a 70k soccer stadium…especially, especially, expecially in Seattle. The laws we passed made it virtually impossible.

          So anyone who is doing so, quit whining about soccer in the US and enjoy it, I have been involved for 40 years, it has never been better.

          • Pingunça says:

            Its as if they just can’t quantify the gap. Soccer is a mainstream sport in the PNW. pay attention to your own team – grow the sport in your own area.

            Keep the cheer leaders ..

        • Jack says:

          why is it hard to maintain grass fields in Seattle? Because of rain? Ever been to Scotland?

          • KingGoogleyEye says:

            It’s hard in Scotland too—which is why several Scottish pro teams have artificial turf fields. And more will follow suit in the next few years.

            But no, it’s not impossible. It’s just really expensive to maintain a grass surface that is better than an artificial surface.

    • Knuckles says:

      Yeah, you’re right. We need a SSS really, really bad because there were only 67K there last night in our SSS. Seriously, go watch EPL. No MLS fan wants you here.

    • Quit whining about turf you've obviously never played on says:

      Name says it all. LOL. Jeebus, so many Americans know so little about the various surfaces various teams play on.

      • I played on Turf and lived to tell about it says:

        The silliest comments are the ones complaining about how impossible it is to “play a beautiful game” or tiki-taka on turf. No gr@ss field is as smooth and even as Field Turf. It means that passes stay straight and low because they don’t bounce off bumps and divots like on gr@ss fields. And if you really want to p@ss the visitors to death, water that turf before the match—the ball speeds along!

        Yes, it’s quite different than playing on gr@ss. But until every gr@ss field is uniformly lush and clean, that complaint is inconsistent.

        True, goal kicks bounce really high off turf if no one gets underneath them—but why on earth at this level would no one get under a goal kick?!

        • Mikey says:

          Right!

          I think everyone would choose a perfectly maintained gr@ss field over any other surface, but when comparing field turf to gr@ss, it’s important to be specific about which gr@ss field. Because there are a lot of gr@ss fields that are not better than a top quality field turf installation.

          For example, the gr@ss on Antigua and Barbuda’s joke of a home field / cricket ground is *not* better than the field turf in Century Link. Whereas I’m fairly certain (but do not know with 100% certainty) that the gr@ss field at Schalke’s home stadium is probably just fantastic and definitely better than the field turf in Century Link.

          There seems to be a great deal of ignorance out there among American soccer fans who quite simply just don’t know the difference between astro turf circa 1977 and field turf circa 2013. And they don’t see to want to know, either. Would rather just ignorantly conflate injury statistics from 30 years ago as some type of statement that has meaning today.

      • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

        The problem is America soccer fans have become a bunch of whiners.

        Oh the turf in El Salvador is too hard and the Jamaica surface is bumpy…….wahhhh.

        Repeat….Name says it all.

        • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

          I’m changing my name to “Quit whining about soccer in the US” out of solidarity.

          QUIT WHINING PEOPLE. JUST. QUIT. WHINING.

  9. Annelid Gustator says:

    Great picture

  10. Old School says:

    I was entertained.

    How long before Clint complains about the turf? I’m convinced it took away a goal from him. Loved him getting into it with the Portland defender. That’s the side of Deuce that I love.

  11. HoBo says:

    Ok game…… great atmosphere.

    Portland came out using san jose’s game plan. play rough and look for cheap fouls. Ref should have pulled out the red card on kah who was completely deserving of it and I’m sure will get a game suspension for putting his knee into Eddie’s head.

    Dempsey needs targets up top and with both Johnson and Martins playing it will get better besides getting in tune with the rest of the team. Rosales needs to be out there instead of Joseph, which by the way was bad…very bad. His effort was embarrassing.

    Seattle has some good players but also have a few really poor players too………..

    • Rory says:

      Dempsey needs to not be playing on a bouncy ball surface covered with carpet. Sorry, but that field is just awful for soccer. Amazing how high goal kicks bounce if nobody gets under them.

      • Knuckles says:

        Good god. Give it a freaking rest. Everyone. Shut up about the damn Field Turf. It is what it is. We understand you don’t like it. We also really don’t care what you think.

        • Rowsdower says:

          and we don’t care what you think.. the carpet is terrible.

        • beachbum says:

          many of us care that it’s a terrible field, you’re mistaken on that one friend

        • Jason says:

          Should all legit criticisms you don’t want to hear about be given a rest? Its a joke to play on that crap as much as it is for a baseball player to slide on astroturf.

        • Put the ball betwixt the stix says:

          Watched last night like everyone else. The atmosphere is fantastic. The field turf is noticeably poor. I’ve heard the arguments on the boards before but it just doesn’t work as well as a natural pitch. We will all be loving the Sounders attendance, fan culture, DPs, etc. from afar but will never accept turf as a legit playing surface for top tier games.

          • MikeP. says:

            Yes.I’ve been watching MLS since the beginning and the things that have bothered me most were the NFL numbers,lines, and artificial surfaces.It’s much better now though.There were times when I thought the league would fold.It has come a long way.

    • PDXBear says:

      I thought Seattle took a page from the Quakes with their cheap fouls and flopping around. Alonzo deserved at least a yellow card on his breakaway pull down on Nagbe in the second half.

      If the MLS Disciplinary Committee will not suspend Lenhart for his antics, why would they step in here? There is needs to be some consistency.

      • BayernAtHeart says:

        It was pretty clearly the Timbers who instigated the cheap fouling tactics in this match. Valeri flopped more than once, both Portland center backs could/should have seen red cards.

        However, you are correct that Alonso should have gotten a yellow for foul accumulation if not straight yellow for the foul on the break.

        • petedx says:

          Kah should have but not with the way that game was being played. Not sure what you are talking about in reference to AJB.

      • whoop-whoop says:

        As a complete neutral in this game, I’d say Alonso definitely deserved a yellow for his grab, not sure what you mean by at least though. Clearly was not a red. Have to say that Portland definitely came in determined to be felt/physical, kick, chop every time SEA received a ball. In general, I prefer a ref that lets things go, but this one got out of hand. First a verbal warning…. then cards should have been shown much earlier to set a tone. The wild scissors from behind by Kah on Johnson could easily have been a red.

  12. Kevin says:

    What are everyone’s thoughts on Caleb Porter’s post-game comments complaining about fouls? I am a Sounders fan, and I definitely saw Alonso get away with one I thought could have been a yellow card (the shirt tug on a breaking Nagbe). Overall I thought Portland got off much lighter than they should have with just the yellow to Kah. He should have been sent off for the Johnson challenge, and between he and Jean-Baptiste they laid down quite a few nasty, reckless tackles of the kind that send people back to the training room.

    Anyone think that Kah will get re-visited by the disciplinary committee for his knee to the head?

    • Josh D says:

      I thought it went both ways and Portland’s were more cynical. I thought the ref did a poor job of controlling the game and by the 70th minute, it just turned into a bit of a brawl.

      Portland were defiantly roughing up Dempsey. But I didn’t think they did anything crazy too him. Just went in hard.

    • Travis says:

      Alonso clearly should have been booked, the foul on Nagbe when he was breaking is a clear yellow, also he earned one just through repeated fouls. However Porter has no leg to stand on when complaining about fouls, Kah could easily have seen straight red and Jean-Baptiste had a number of heavy tackles.

      • beachbum says:

        probably, but Marufo prefers physical games and lets things go both ways all the time. I thought Alonso was excellent last night

    • stpauljosh says:

      It should get revisited. That was a total chump move. I was rooting for Portland too. Kah was dirty and stupid the whole match.

  13. Josh D says:

    For all the hype, the game itself was pretty poor. Neither team had any control and the ball bounced around. Pulling 67K for a game means one day Seattle deserve their own stadium. Sure it makes financial sense now to keep it the way it is, but in the next five years Seattle needs to build a stadium that’ll keep that atmosphere inside and allow those fans to be right close to the action.

    Dempsey I thought was poor. He got himself involved in the first half, but disappeared in the second. He also needs to stop doing all his little tricks. He doesn’t need to do them to justify his price tag. He needs to perform and contribute. It’ll be interesting to see how he does against Costa Rica.

    • Mike O says:

      He’s WAY overvalued. He’s on the wrong side of 30 and his production and playing time has gone down the last 2 seasons. I think if he scores 4 goals in MLS this season(and that’s a stretch) people should be content. Not every player can be Landon Donovan. My biggest issue with Dempsey(other than the fact he’s a flounder) is that he’s always been the type of player to be hot and cold. He either has a great game or he’s non-existent. He’s never just there having a good game and Flounder fans will see this. Not saying they’re the same person but he’s like Ryan Johnson. Portland fans love him because he scores goals but he gets lazy at times and occasionally looks lost. Clint does the same thing.

      • Francois says:

        Except Clint is twice the player Ryan Johnson is. You can’t compare the two, because Ryan Johnson isn’t even a poor mans Clint Dempsey. I’m not a Sounders, actually I dislike them, but no one can argue that those two aren’t even in the same discussion in terms of talent.

    • bb says:

      Are you from Seattle? I feel like the people who say the Sounders need to move have never been there. That stadium, and it’s location downtown, is one of the best things going for them. We all know how die-hard the Sounders fans are, but if you move the stadium outside of Seattle to the suburbs (cause you aint finding a piece of land inside the city for a new stadium) the attendance will plummet. There is a huge clique-i-ness / sibling rivalry between Seattle and the Eastside (Bellevue) Moving the stadium out there is a sure-fire way to make sure the the “I’m too hip for Microsoft & the Eastside” crowd stops going to games. And if they can build another stadium it’s not gonna be one that can hold +50k (which you wouldn’t need anyways as I’m sure regular attendance would drop) If they put the team outside the Seattle city limits it’d turn into a NY/NJ Redbulls situation. I think the Sounders should stay right where they are.

      • KingGoogleyEye says:

        In theory, you could put a stadium northward—Shoreline or Lake City—and find the land necessary and avoid any problems of “rivalry.”

        Though I’m not convinced that Seattlites would really be unwilling to travel to Redmond/Bellevue just out of pride. The greater issue is that they’d be unwilling to travel out of how difficult it is to travel. The buses and rail go downtown—right next to the stadium. You aren’t going to find anything like that in Bellevue, Redmond, or even Lake City. (Okay, so in 2018 or something the rail will go to Northgate, but that doesn’t solve transportation problems for everyone.)

        So yeah, there are 4 major reasons not to build a SSS in Seattle:

        1) It would be a total waste of money. They have a stadium they can already play in and it seats 67,000. Who wants to fork over $500M+ for a stadium that would only be used 20 nights per year? (And compete with the Clink for concerts, etc. to try to make money all the other nights.)

        2) Transportation to a venue not downtown will never be as good. That would definitely keep people away.

        3) Downtown is a great place for the March to the Match or any other pregame activities people want to do. Anywhere else would be lame.

        4) Reread the first reason. It’s the only reason anyone will ever need.

  14. ATX_Colin says:

    I thought Dempsey was trying to force things a little to much with the ball. He seemed a little to cute on the ball a few times, hes better when playing quick one, two, three touch ball. He is going to get every defenders best shot, I think he will have to adjust to always being the focal point of opposing teams defenders.

  15. Dc says:

    I’m just curious, after several weeks of people being so defensive about Clint’s move, I’m wondering what happens if he never scores, Seattle doesn’t make the playoffs, and he just kinda plays mediocre like this for the rest of the season. Hey, I’m not sayin’ he was terrible, I’m not saying he doesn’t need time to adjust, but still curious, would people admit that it was a bad move?

    • Travis says:

      Isnt that a bit a jump to make? Lots of players struggle coming to MLS in the summer, most do not really adjust until the following year.

    • Quit whining about soccer in the US says:

      Maybe they would finally admit MLS is a pretty tough league ?

      I won’t hold my breathe….

      build a bonfire, build a bonfire….

      • Dc says:

        A tough league, sure. More competitive than playing for Tottenham? Not possible. Anyway, that is not the question I was asking.

        • Dc says:

          Ps. You are both proving my point. Why can’t people rationally think about this instead of automatically assuming someone is criticizing MLS? It has nothing to do with it. I love MLS and am very proud of it. People do well in certain leagues, and not so well in others. My questions is can people see through their blind patriotism and look at it objectively? So far, no.
          (Good point about the summer transfer tho)

          • SoundersOff says:

            You’ll just get a dozen people lashing out with cliches about always pulling through as if that means anything.

            For some reason Dempsey gets a complete pass. Other DPs are expected to instantly contribute and usually do.

            For him it seems to be, “oh he needs time for chemistry.”

            Well Dempsey has now played 236 minutes for Seattle and has only registered 3 shots on target.

            Pathetic.

            • whoop-whoop says:

              Hopefully this is not taken as lashing out… merely adding to the discussion. Question, how else are we to assess a player and attempt to predict the future if not by past performance? As for most DPs instantly producing, it is simply not the case, especially arriving mid-season. Keane did well, but if my memory is correct, it took him a few games to score and frankly, he came into a team with a very good facilitator/LD and more fluid ball movement. The concept of building chemistry is hardly a new one in the game of soccer. As with anything….. time will tell.

              • Dc says:

                it’s true, it’s true, most DPs have taken longer than expected to start producing. i guess i thought it would be easier for clint to fit in, being american and him having tons of experience in MLS.

              • shake says:

                Keane scored in his first game. Try again.

              • whoop-whoop says:

                Well Shake…. I did mention him as a player who adjusted well and added a caveat, “if my memory serves me” for a reason. Do remember there being an early gap, perhaps after that first game where he didn’t score, but it isn’t really too important in what I was attempting to say.

            • whoop-whoop says:

              Dc
              Yeah…. MLS has changed/grown quite a bit since he left and…. even changing teams within the same league, it can take time to sync up. Guess the jump from Fulham to Spurs showed us that. Pretty sure he’ll be just fine.

          • BayernAtHeart says:

            Dc, what realistically are the odds that the premise you presented will ever come true?

            “what happens if he never scores, Seattle doesn’t make the playoffs, and he just kinda plays mediocre like this for the rest of the season?”

            Dempsey NEVER scoring is close to an impossibility. Seattle missing the playoffs, given their current form and the games in hand appears highly unlikely. Dempsey appears to be gaining fitness quickly, and looked better in this start than in his previous Sounders appearances.

            However, if somehow that does all come true that is not an indication of a bad transfer decision by Deuce. It would be an indication that Deuce is nowhere near the player he once was and the Sounders would’ve been ripped off.

            • Dc says:

              hah, all excellent points. i guess what i mean is generally not looking like the player that we remember. seattle is not my favorite team, but i do watch them, and i just haven’t been impressed with him so far. is it just me or does it seem like he is trying to do way too much with the ball?

              • BayernAtHeart says:

                In interviews Dempsey has said a few times that he thinks coming to the Sounders will be a chance for him to play the style of soccer he fell in love with. He wants to be the technical dribbler he started out as, but was not able to be within the confines of the EPL teams he played for.

                He may find that MLS isn’t as easy as it was when he left, and it is more difficult to execute dribbling “tricks” than it once was.

    • whoop-whoop says:

      I think there is going to be an break-in period, but that the scenario you laid out is highly unlikely. 1st of all, Seattle with games in hand is on the cusp of leading the West and clearly a better team than Vancouver, Dallas, Colorado, San Jose. Never score? Clint will adjust and find a way to score like he always does. At his point, we are playing hypotheticals. Frankly, there are never guarantees and, the question is not complete without examining and entering the alternative into the equation. What if he had stayed at Spurs and been relegated to a marginal role, saw very little of the pitch in critical situations and only scored a hand-full of goals? Of the two “what ifs”, I think the latter is the more likely. Think Clint clearly was not in their long-term plans.

  16. beachbum says:

    not the greatest game. Portland on the road isn’t a fun team to ‘watch imo, they muddy everything up and foul hard from behind, and their 2 centerbacks lead the charge. Different at home but hopefully not scheduled as the main Sunday evening event again when they play on the road

    Dempsey trying too hard to justify his price tag seems to me, but the guy goes for it with abandon in the moments, took some lumps for it last night. I think teams will foul Clint in the middle third when they can

    Rosales looking much better than he did earlier coming back from injury. changed the game

  17. The Other Jeff says:

    As to the hard fouls and refereeing, something seems to have gotten lost in the discussion. Kah cost them the game with that foul on EJ.

  18. Kevin says:

    Zach Scott’s comment is why everyone hates Seattle. It sucks for USMNT fans, like myself, that Dempsey, Evans, Johnson, and Yedlin play for the Sounders, because I really can’t stand that franchise and its pompous fans.

    …cue the rabid insults and self-righteous comments from Seattle.

    • Travis says:

      Meh, any Seattle fan is well aware of how our fan base can be but it really isnt so different from other fan bases just amped up a bit.

    • Jack says:

      franchise?

    • ATX_Colin says:

      “Zach Scott’s comment is why everyone hates Seattle”

      Dude your reaching, Im not from seattle nor a sounders fan, please dont try to speak for everyone with your bad comments.

      • Btoom says:

        Scott is speaking strictly of Portland. He’s played against them for 11 years now so he can say what he feels about the rivalry as there is NO player on either side with as much experience of what a Seattle Vs Portland match is. You may not like it but it is what Portland says ever year. On a side note Portland played really well. Surprised Seattle got 3 points out of it.

    • Tom says:

      A little context is probably needed – Scott was responding to Porter’s pregame comment implying that Portland is a real team whereas Seattle was a collection of individuals, some of whom are stars. Petty banter – but Scott (and Sounders) get the last laugh again.

    • The Other Jeff says:

      Taken out of context. If you read the question and the full quote, he was describing what he said in the locker room to his teammates.

  19. Mason says:

    A! C! B! S!
    Fight!
    Fight!
    Fight!

  20. Matt Rasmussen says:

    Nice picture of the stadium crowd and TIFO on Yahoo: link to sports.yahoo.com

    Filling stadiums and getting media to recognize it is good for the MLS.

  21. KingGoogleyEye says:

    grass pass assume.

    (Look Ma: my comment wasn’t moderated!)