Scouting Caribbean teams can be a challenge. Outside the two that participate within the
American system (Puerto Rico Islanders, Antigua Barracuda FC) the other leagues aren't available on
television and highlights are hard to find. With the upcoming 2012-13 CONCACAF Champions League
opponent being Caledonia AIA the Seattle Sounders are at an advantage because both Ezra Hendrickson
and Kurt Schmid actively scout players from Trinidad & Tobago.
Sammy Ochoa was the most popular player interview after Seattle Sounders practice. The
traditional target forward recorded a brace in the Reserve game against Chivas USA. He knows that
the expectations from Sigi Schmid on the First Team or Ezra Hendrickson on the Reserves is to score
goals. Sigi reminded the gathered media that players can and do work their way up from success in
secondary competitions to meaningful minutes in MLS matches.
This being a bye week, we're all searching for stuff to talk about. The topic du jour seems to
be the Seattle Sounders' depth, or perceived lack there of. It's been debated here in the comments
sections, but got a little bit more of my interest because of stuff that has been said over at
A fairly significant figure was at today's Seattle Sounders Reserve loss to the LA Galaxy.
Landon Donovan was hoping to see Steve Zakuani back on the pitch. Aren't we all? Zakuani responded
over twitter with an exciting next step in his journey to return to MLS play.
The Portland Timbers squad brought north is primarily deep roster players, with a handful of
names you'll recognize. Brian Rowe will be their keeper as he joins from the MLS keepers pool, left
back Brett Evans is also new to Portland as of today. Timbers traveled only 15 players, including
Tonight's MLS Reserve League match between the Portland Timbers and Seattle Sounders FC is a
chance for fans to see high level soccer at Starfire Sports with just a suggested donation, a
chance for Eddie Johnson to show what he can do, a chance for Assistant Coach Ezra Hendrickson to
continue developing talents while winning and a chance for the greatest rivalry in American soccer
With rumors of Cordell Cato reaching a contract agreement and Mrisho Ngassa's club still waiting
for confirmation that Tanzanian international will return for another training stint with Seattle
Sounders FC it could be said that Hanauer & Co went for the U-20 Trinidad player rather than the
East African U-23.
It isn't that Seattle Sounders FC's defense was poor, in fact is was quite good. The team gave
up only 50 goals in all 48 competitive games for a 1.04 Goals Against Average. But there were two
chronic issues - a weakness on the counter and probably merely average against set-pieces.
Underlying the stopping of the opposition is a desire and recognition at the club to be better
playing the ball out of the back.
Today's Reserve Game has so many different storylines. There's O'Brian White's probable return
to the lineup. There's the attempt by Seattle to remain perfect in this lower level competition, as
they are currently 7-0-0 with a +8 Goal Differential. Is the game open to the public or not? Which
seems like it should have a simple answer, but there were conflicting reports yesterday, and the
Vancouver Whitecaps statement on the subject provides little clarity.
Today's Reserve game (11AM at Starfire) in the Seattle rain will feature the strongest MLS
Reserve squad at the half way point of their season. The Sounders are 5-0-0 with a +7 goal
differential and face the Los Angeles Galaxy Reserve side that is winless in three played with a -7
While the offense gets the glory, it is the defense that carries the load. One bad play on
defense is a goal. One great play is standard operating procedure. So defenses in MLS don't get
much attention, except when there is a three-way battle for starts, fullbacks that both have
experience as wide midfielders and a young Generation Addidas talent still learning the role.
The Washington State Senate and State House of Representatives both passed resolutions this past
Friday honoring the achievements of Seattle Sounders FC in their first year as a Major League
Soccer club. Sounders general manager Adrian Hanauer and goalkeeper Kasey Keller were both on hand
for the event.
Video from Eddie Johnson's first day at training. A few key takeaways that seem to be constantly
overlooked: Ezra Hendrickson (assistant coach) played with EJ with FC Dallas and Chris Henderson
(technical director) and David Tenney (fitness coach) both coached EJ in Kansas City. Eddie was far
from unknown to this coaching staff.
Cold air, but sunny skies down at Starfire for the last split session training on the schedule.
Session One, the younger players, saw 10v10 action. They needed a warm body to fill out the full
20, instead assistant coach Ezra Hendrickson (now on twitter) played as a left back in their three
Last night's U.S. Open Cup final had plenty of Southern California interest what with the likes
of former Galaxy team members Sigi Schmid, Pete Vagenas and Ezra Hendrickson (as an assistant
coach) involved for Seattle and Josh Wicks starting for D.C. United.
Wicks, who seems to have learned from his traumatic experience last year in L.
Set to begin another salary cap-governed year in Major League Soccer, one would expect a bit of
turnover for every team. After only two full seasons of existence, 54 players have graced the
Philadelphia Union roster (55 if you include Danny Cepero's one-game emergency goalkeeping bench
stint), and only 5 remain of the original cast.
Burrito loves all the Futbol yesterdays especially wheres Burrito's Mexico lindo win! Ahuevo!
But Burrito bring you footage of the greatest game everwhever in the history of futbol! You no
believe? Here is great game recaps of Greece vs Germany! It important to see how well thought of
all the plays are made.
I noticed a couple of errors yesterday relating to the LA Galaxy's games in the 2000 CONCACAF
Champions Cup (played in January 2001, but still called the 2000 edition). They've been fixed, and
the corrected version can be downloaded here (stats through 2010).
Brian Kelly & Zak Ibsen were each listed with two sub appearances.
For the first time in club history the Galaxy play a legitimate Champions League game.
Well, a preliminary round game anyway. And it's against the "minor league" Puerto Rico Islanders
not a big name club. Oh, and it's the CONCACAF version not the famous UEFA edition.
Still, for Galaxy fans tonight's 7 o'clock game at Home Depot Center (live on Fox Soccer
Channel) is bigger than the MLS All-Star game featuring Manchester United a day later, said Coach
Bruce Arena in my weekly column.
Both Don Ruiz and Joshua Mayers relayed the injury status of the Sounders. The simple version is that the same players who were available Wednesday are still available while Estrada and/or Zakuani could be available. There may be changes though as Seattle Sounders FC needs to be more aggressive in leg two.
The Seattle Sounders Reserve team is coached by Ezra Hendrickson. He has 16 years of pro soccer and a few of those were in the lower divisions playing in Des Moines, New Orleans and Charleston. He will not face any of those teams (two are no longer pro sides), but in his role as the Reserves Coach he will face off against Orlando City in a home and home.
We probably don't want to get our hopes up too high, but Steve Zakuani has been deemed "50-50"
as being able to play in Friday's Reserve League game against the Vancouver Whitecaps. This would
mark his first game action of any kind that Zakuani has done since appearing in a scrimmage against
Gonzaga back on April 1.
1) Paulo Araujo Jr. is player 1,494. Last night, the Brazilian came on for RSL in their CCL match,
and scored on his debut. He follows Sheanon Williams, the Philadelphia Union right back, who made
his debut on Saturday and was player 1,493. We're now only 6 players away from 1,500 all time for
MLS teams in all competitions.
President Obama welcomed the Columbus Crew to the White House on Monday to celebrate the team's
2008 MLS Cup title. The event was a reunion of sorts, as Ezra Hendrickson, Brad Evans, and Pat
Noonan rejoined their former teammates. Also in attendance was current Sounders head coach Sigi
Schmid, the architect behind the Crew's surprising turnaround and championship run.