Morris goals aren’t enough for Sounders to win over Sporting Kansas City

Jordan Morris Sounders
PHOTO: Jordan Morris produced two goals against Sporting Kansas City, although he had good looks for a third goal. Photo courtesy of Jane Gershovich/Seattle Sounders FC.

Seattle, Washington (Aug. 5, 2019) — Brian Schmetzer warned fans and his Seattle Sounders FC players to not take Sporting Kansas City lightly. During his mid-week press conference, Schmetzer brushed off the speculation of how rough the team has been, given their place in the standings.

However, Schmetzer had no part of that. He knows that Sporting Kansas City is a good team. He saw them beat the Sounders a couple months ago in Kansas City. Schmetzer also learned the lesson of not basing teams on their place in the standings the hard way. Portland has been underneath Seattle this whole season — yet the Timbers still claimed two wins against Seattle this year.

Sporting Kansas City didn’t dominate the entire match. The score was a repeat of what happened in May, a final of 3-2.

However, Sporting did burst out of the gate looking like the team they have in years past. Felipe Gutierrez scored the opening goal early in the 12th minute. Then, in the 33rd minute, he slotted a penalty kick home, past goalkeeper Stefan Frei. Nouhou Tolo, who was slotted at left back for Brad Smith, gave up the penalty.

Seattle did manage to pull one back, opening the second half with a blast from Jordan Morris. The U.S. Men’s National Team striker went one-on-one with defender Matt Besler. Then, he was double-teamed by Tim Melia. Morris had no problem calmly slotting the shot home.

However, disaster struck in the 58th minute, as Erik Hurtado got another one for Sporting. Another goal from Jordan Morris in the 82nd minute wasn’t enough for Seattle to muster a comeback.

After the match, Morris said the tough part of losing was seeing opportunities not go in the back of Melia’s net.

“The lesson here is to come a little bit better,” Morris said. “We had a poor first half, so if we could’ve avoided that, we could’ve won the game… We needed to come out with more energy. When we’re at home, we have to come out and take it to teams. Today, unfortunately, we didn’t do that.”

Three Takeaways

  1. Morris gets better and better: When Jordan Morris tore his ACL last year, there was a widespread panic among the Sounders — and national team — fans. Players that return from ACL injuries don’t come back the same player. Luckily for Morris, he came back better and stronger. He’s pushing to have a caliber year and he’s still got a lot left in the tank.
  2. The centerbacks aren’t an issue: During the week, news came out that Roman Torres would be suspended for 10 games, due to violating the MLS’ substance abuse policy. Xavier Arreaga stepped right up, not missing a beat. There’s going to be some confusion between him and Kim Kee-hee. Neither player speaks the same language and they don’t speak English. However, give those two time and they’ll figure it out. The first two goals weren’t their fault. On the third goal, Kim just got out-ran by Hurtado.
  3. Dropping down two spots: Heading into this match, Seattle sat pretty in second place in the Western Conference. However, this conference is tight and not separated by a lot of points. Minnesota now sits in second place, while San Jose takes third place. However, this is how tight the competition is — all three of those teams have 38 points.

What’s Next? 

Seattle will look to rebound at home when Bruce Arena and the New England Revolution come to town on Saturday night. New England has been revitalized under Arena’s leadership, as they produced a seven-match unbeaten streak before falling to Los Angeles FC this weekend.

The match will be held at 4 p.m. EST.

Meanwhile, Sporting Kansas City — who sit in 10th place in the Western Conference, still out of a playoff spot — will host Real Salt Lake on Saturday night at 8:30 p.m.

PHOTO: Jordan Morris produced two goals against Sporting Kansas City, although he had good looks for a third goal. Photo courtesy of Jane Gershovich/Seattle Sounders FC.

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