The Seattle Sounders face the San Jose in the biggest MLS matchup of the weekend. Avaya stadium will host a must-watch Western Conference showdown as the Sounders and Quakes fight for playoff positioning with the season coming down to the wire.
These two clubs have been on a crash course for the past month. The Quakes have finally gotten their season on course while the Sounders have mostly been crashing. San Jose was the hottest team in the league for all of August: they won 4 in a row with four clean sheets and a combined score of 9-0. It wasn’t pushovers they were beating either, they ran through L.A., SKC and (then) East-leading DC United. The Sounders were 1-3 in August. And that was world’s better than June and July.
BOLD PREDICTION: Tricky one. San Jose has owned the Sounders over the last few years. Ozzie’s absence due to yellow card accumulation (after his laughable card for “simulation” last week) definitely won’t help our cause, but there are too many slippery factors going into this matchup.
The Quakes are not a wildly dangerous team. Wondo scores the goals, MPG and Salinas provide the service and Quincy Amarikwa is annoying. This has been the case for most of the season, but Seattle still has trouble with this team. That trouble could boil over is Anibal Godoy is in the lineup tonight.
Godoy’s signing triggered San Jose’s 4-game win streak. He was away on international duty when San Jose lost 2-1 to Philly last weekend. He is that important. After playing Tuesday for Panama in Venezuela, he is back training with San Jose. Luckily for us, he but left the pitch at halftime suffering a slight injury on a wet pitch in Ciudad Guayana. Let’s hope SJ coach Kinnear decides Godoy is too important and rests him.
Sigi’s absence will be another unquantifiable wrinkle. Schemtzer has a solid 3-1 record replacing Sigi on the bench, but that lone loss came earlier this season against San Jose. We may have Ivanschitz makes his Seattle debut, might. Honestly, let’s say we finish with a 2-2 draw. SJ pushes the game and we break, a little too much, but our firepower is just warming up and can’t be stopped.