The Seattle Sounders showed some resiliency and toughness in their 3-1 win over the New York Red Bulls. After unveiling their 2016 MLS Championship banner in front of 45,600 appreciative fans, the Sounders let their one goal slip away then answered with back to back goals Jordan Morris and Harry Shipp to secure their first win of the season.
SOUNDERS RESILIENT ON DEFENSE
The New York Red Bulls (2-1) strolled intro Century Link Field with the best record in the Eastern Conference Sunday Night and a roster that had last year’s top goal scorer in Bradley Wright-Philips and top assist man in Sacha Kljestan. The Sounders were without suspended Center Back Roman Torres. Gustav Svenson moved from right back to Center back and Oniel Fisher started at right back for Svenson.
Despite the makeshift backline, the Sounders played their best defensive game of the young season. After giving up two goals in each of the previous two games, the Sounders played solid team defense from the frontline to the backline. Goal scorers Jordan Morris, Clint Dempsey and Harry Shipp put in work on the defensive end. The Sounders ability to play team defense passed its sternest test of the day when Fisher left the game due to an injury and was replaced by Roldan who was playing midfield at the time. Alvaro Fernandez entered the game and stepped in for Roldan in the midfield
SOUNDERS BEAT THE PRESS
The Sounders solid defensive play neutralized the Red Bulls offense despite the visitors winning the possession battle ( 52% to 47%). The Sounders were able to create more offensive shots due to the team’s ability to dribble past the Red Bulls high press. Seattle’s ability to break the Red Bulls pressure was the key in the Sounders winning the game according to Red Bulls head coach Jesse Marsch.
“With the ball, we weren’t sharp enough and able to make enough plays to create advantages. Then with our pressing, a number of times guys were able to dribble out of two or three players and start to create advantages because we let them out of tight spots meant that we had to deal with numbers up, numbers down situations, and counters in attacking plays. If we could win more of those balls, then we could actually set ourselves up to have more advantages the other way. We have to be better at our pressing and forward defending and then have to be better in possession.”
The Sounders’ win over the Red Bulls snaps New York’s 18-game MLS regular-season unbeaten streak dating back to last July 3.