To round out my Sounders Season Preview (funny since we’re officially in the swing of things), I present my overall Bold Predictions for the season. Picture me, today, looking into my M’Kraan crystal ball and seeing…
MLS Season: 17-10-7, 58 points
The Sounders slow their regular season roll in 2015 and settle back into their usual spot of second or third’ish best in the West. 58 points is still a solid season. The Western Conference is tough and getting tougher: no more easy points at Chivas, SKC and Houston aren’t pushovers, and San Jose has overthrown themselves completely and should no longer be cellar dwellers. However Seattle fails to pace the conference not because other teams are better, but because the Sounders are finally changing their ethos.
With multiple Open Cups, a newly acquired Supporters’ Shield and a ticket punched to CONCACAF Champions League, Seattle can set their sights on the one prize that fans feel is way overdue: MLS Cup. Dempsey and Co. tried to take them all last year but got bite in the butt by a tiebreaker. With a team this talented and a city this hungry, the Sounders can little afford to again miss their date with MLS Cup destiny due to the slimmest of margins.
Thus it’s a “Cup or Bust” year for Seattle, no matter the narrative coming out of Starfire. I predict Sigi rests his starters more than usual (no more Dempsey and Ozzie playing on three days rest on a Wednesday night at Chivas). Seattle’s best are at the peaks of their primes and Ozzie is already showing some age. Seattle will pull the old Dynamo/Galaxy rope-a-dope of privileging the playoffs over the 34-match slog that is the regular season.
Then the Sounders will clamp down in the playoffs. They will win MLS Cup. Boom. Said it.
Other Fun Seattle Predictions:
- Loses the Cascadia Cup to Vancouver because, well… we’re kinda making of habit of this.
- Loses in the Quarterfinals of the Open Cup to… oh hell… Columbus. Why not?
- Advances to the CCL knockout stage setting up an epic run next season.