Orlando, Florida — It isn’t a rivalry by any means. However, when the Seattle Sounders FC and San Jose Earthquakes took to the pitch in Orlando at the MLS is Back Tournament, it sure felt like a rivalry. Early on, there was pushing and shoving.
It didn’t take long before each side was off the bench, yelling at referee Drew Fischer to give out more yellow and even red cards. However, emotions began to simmer down as the match went on. Chances increased, though, for both sides.
Stefan Frei was a busy man in net for the Sounders.
A man that has constantly been dubbed as having the team on his entire back, Frei came up with eight saves against the Earthquakes. His best save came against Valeri Qazaishvili, who shot outside the box. Frei came up with a big, stretching save to help preserve a Sounders clean sheet.
However, Daniel Vega also had an impressive night in net. With chances coming from Raul Ruidiaz, Jordan Morris and Cristian Roldan, Vega was able to stop six Sounders shots. Each goalkeeper preserved a clean sheet.
The contest was the first action back for teams in about four months. Heading into the tournament, Seattle picked up a drawn and a victory. Meanwhile, for the Earthquakes, Matías Almeyda’s side shocked Toronto FC with a draw, but then fell to Minnesota United FC.
However, San Jose didn’t look like that same team that lost 5-2 to Minnesota in March. On the other hand, Seattle looked tired at times. That’s to be expected from all teams in the tournament, who unexpectedly took four months off due to COVID-19 halting the sports world.
— Last Word on Soccer (@LastWordSC) July 11, 2020
What’s next for San Jose and Seattle at MLS is Back?
Either way, both teams sit in Group B with one point each. Group B saw some rearranging, as the Chicago Fire moved into the group after the withdrawal of FC Dallas and Nashville SC from the tournament.
Chicago will make its Group B debut against the Sounders on July 14 at 9 a.m. ET. Meanwhile, San Jose will look to pick up some points against the Vancouver Whitecaps at 10:30 p.m. on July 15.