Sounder at Heart Archives for January 2009

Glimmer of Hope – Road Performance

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Seattle's Record on the Road has some peculiarities to it. If they hold, than things could fair quite well. If they don't, then Seattle misses the MLS Cup Playoffs. You see Seattle actually has performed better on the Road v Eastern Conference teams (small sample size) than the West. Seattle @ East currently sits at [.

Sven Goren Erickson wants Ljungberg

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Well, it looks like the Notts County plan for success is to overpay for as many former stars as possible. Qatari money will help you do that. To include one Freddie Ljungberg. Former Inter Milan striker Vieri, 36, and Arsenal legend Ljungberg, 32, could be tempted by one last lucrative payday to help County get out [.

Winning Matters – Or why this draw could be the end

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Seattle is teetering now on the brink. As of this writing both DC and Salt Lake are winning as away teams and earning points that will change the outlook of the playoffs. Sure, this technically wasn't a must win, but there are now only 6 points available at home. This was as important a [...]

How does one market the US Open Cup

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Earlier this week the Alliance Council had our monthly conference call with Bart Wiley (Director of Business Development) and we discussed many things (I have to leave it at that because our blog entry at the team site is going up soon). The thing that concerned me the most was a conversation about where Sounders FC [.

S before T – Hosting Toronto Keys to Game

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If you've been reading this site you know this match has significant playoff implications. This is basically the 7th seed v the 10th seed. It is in essence a must win (remember those from early in the season?). A win could bump Seattle to 6th and a loss dropping them potentially to [...]

Platini to implement the softest of caps

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Well, it looks like tomorrow a new era in European Football will start. One where revenue will determine what kind of players can be signed, NOT reputation, nor Arab monies. I'm betting that al-Fahim is thrilled to be getting in on Portsmouth just in time to find out that an actual business plan is necessary.

On the Diamond

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Not baseball, but the 4-3-1-2 or 4-1-3-2(Sounders sometimes in this variant), and how it developed and is used in Europe. This is a great read on tactics. What is notable is that while Sounders FC use a formation that could be described this way, they actually abandoned the #10 concept for which Ljungberg was initially slotted.

Stats, Ratings updated

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Below are the tables for the statistics updates. Notable as well is that I did the player ratings for Prost Amerika. Top five in Productivity for the league are; Cunningham 1.65 Casey 1.58 Montero 1.51 Scheletto 1.48 Donovan 1.43 Omar Cummings is making a run as well with his big assist numbers. Offensive Productivity A look at Goals, Assists, Minutes Played and Productivity [.

For Your Entertainment

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Not the old music/video retailer, but something to give you a smile.

Quickest of thoughts on an away draw

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Good teams win at home and draw on the road. Currently Seattle is literally drawing 100% of matches on the road, earning 1 point per match. They are earning 1.83 points per match at home. THIS DOESN"T MEAN THEY ARE A GOOD TEAM. Good teams finish. Good teams win when they outplay their opponent. The [.

Context for today’s matches

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This is done before the first match of the day. I will update after the last match as well, but this should provide for some context. It is the pacing based off of home and road records to this point continuing through the rest of the season. Eastern Conference Playoffs Columbus (53) v LA Galaxy [.

No Tougher Test – SSFC @ Houston Dynamo

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Let's test something this week. Sounders FC has a recent (last 5) form of 0-4-1 (0/8) and Houston has a 2-2-1 (7/7) form in the same stretch of league play. Recent form would make you think that Houston is a mid-table team and Sounders a bottom of the barrel expansion club. Recent form would be [...

I do things different

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There are some differences between this site and others that cover the Sounders, or North American soccer. You'll notice I don't talk about form, or work-rate, but instead focus on the provable and the tangible, on the specifics of what has occurred. Because I think that form is a cop-out for journalists that [.

Revolution comes to Seattle

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I'm not talking the political revolution where an incumbent mayor can't even make it past the top two primary. I'm not talking web 2.0, or "hidden" Starbucks (Starbucks not really hidden). Its the New England Revolution here, and yet the revolution they will be seeing is a pure partnership between both Vulcan properties the [.

Preview of the MVP race? Stats updated

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Normally I have the Sounders stats lead off the weekly update, but today I was talking to someone about the MVP race and it is notable that there are three offensive stars who belong in the discussion, and two keepers. By Points Per 90 (aka Productivity) Montero 1.51 Donovan 1.48 GBS 1.48 An argument could be made for Conor Casey [.

Quit proving the league is small time

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Duane indicates that it is about American isolationism (he's got a bit of a point), but for me statements from Santino Quaranta like the following indicate the league is just small time. "I guess it is. It's important to the club and it's important to the people here we're taking it seriously but [.

Drawing a Card v Simulating

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For your viewing pleasure, a comparison of almost the exact same play. Landon Donovan draws the Caution against Tyrone Marshall, getting him sent off the pitch. Freddie Ljungberg gets called for Simulation and receives a Caution, almost immediately getting a second Caution for Dissent. I see slight hip checks by defenders in each case.

In Victoria this weekend

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It is my 6 year anniversary, and so my wife and I took a trip out of town. I will do my best to watch the Galaxy match, but it certainly isn't as big a priority as celebrating us. I will be having a few fine local brews, and hope to share that [...]

The Galaxy You Know

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Earlier we opened up the pregame analysis with a look at the defensive five in Bruce Arena's current 4-1-3-2 system. Those five have been quite effective defensively, limiting their opposition to the second fewest shots and second best goals against average in the league. But this match is a marquee crusher because of the Galaxy [.

The Eras of MLS

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I often talk of MLS 1.0, MLS 2.0 and MLS 3.0. There have been some questions, and I have overheard some call the current era MLS 2.0. But let's review the league, it has some clear breaking points and really must be defined as three different eras. MLS 1.0 1996-2001 Americanization of [...]

News from Argentina while you wait

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You may think you missed the start of the Argentine football season, you would be wrong. The league canceled its first week in an effort to save money. The tough economic times hit Argentina as hard as anyone, maybe harder. Now the AFA is going to break their TV contract to try and double [...]

The Galaxy You Don’t Know

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The front five get all the attention in Galaxy-land. They are pretty, they are fast and they score in bunches. They also aren't the only story down in Carson at the Home Depot Center. Arena recently switched to the 4-1-3-2, and that back five has been better than solid, and they are the Galaxy [...

Statistics Update and FAQ

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FAQ will be listed first for Plus/Minus 1 Why don't you do this for the other teams? Because I don't really have time. I didn't think it would this tough, but I update a spreadsheet and then the tables. I really wish I could have the full League, Open Cup, Voyageurs Cup, SuperLiga and [...]

Starters, Rotationals, Substitutes and Reserves

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This is something that people have been asking me offline and via email "What is a Rotational player?" It made so much sense to me that I have answered it on a one off basis, but the question has come up often enough that I feel it is time to answer it here. As a [...]

Camping this weekend

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Here are site related issues I will be putting together as I enjoy a few days in the wilderness (using a pen/paper notebook). Redesign. Serious and significant. Short version is that the categories will switch to the competitions covered. Easier visibility to the depth of the site. This will likely launch over [.

Lessons from Barcelona

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I didn't expect to write anything from the Barcelona match. It was a friendly, which to me screams exhibition with a bigger price tag. But I think we actually learned a little bit about the Sounders and Sigi last night. Sure the crowd set a record, sure we saw Lionel Messi work his magic, [...]

Onalfo Fired, Sounders Player Ratings and CBA negotiations

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KC canned Onalfo for being basically an average coach in the league for 2.5 years. Average used to a get a club a decent seed in the playoffs, now it barely makes it in them. But if Onalfo isn't good enough for KC, what are Osario and Hyndman doing? I had the "pleasure" of [...]

Plus/Minus is really just a minus update

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After tonight's match I updated Plus/Minus quickly, because it shows us a few things about who has been effective both ways, and who has not. Tonight, there was a lot of NOT to update. Productivity will be updated the next time a player for the Sounders scores a goal in the Sounders favor. Which [.

LaPorta+Saputo=Garber’s 20?

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Now, most of my readers might know that I am a fan of the Montreal Impact joining MLS, if not, you are now. The third Canadian club just makes sense. Montreal is a large market, with a built in fanbase and it creates two more drivable derbies. Garber even seems to indicate that they [...]

At the Quakes – this isn’t supposed to be easy

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Seattle travels down to the Bay Area to face San Jose for the third match this season with the Heritage Cup on the line, while many would think this is a match made for victory it is not. What it is is an average home team hosting an average road team. While victory [...]