Lack of playing time for Sounders FC's Nate Jaqua is due to a concussion
The combination of the concussion and a look at a different lineup has kept the forward off the field lately.
Seattle Times staff reporter
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TUKWILA — Nate Jaqua is not in Coach Sigi Schmid's doghouse. The coach made that clear Sunday at Sounders FC practice.
Jaqua, a forward who is second on the team in goals with seven and has played in all but one regular-season game, didn't start Saturday's scoreless draw against Chivas USA, and also sat out the U.S. Open Cup final earlier this month. He came on as a substitute Saturday, which was cause to question why Jaqua has seen fewer minutes lately.
On Sunday at Starfire Sports Complex, Jaqua, an accomplished Major League Soccer veteran, found himself in the unfamiliar position of playing in a reserve game.
But Schmid hasn't benched Jaqua for bad play. Jaqua, in fact, suffered a blow to his temple on Aug. 29 against Toronto FC that caused a concussion, and the lingering effects of that forced him out of the Open Cup match.
"We were looking at different things," Schmid said of Jaqua. "We played him wide right [in the reserve game]. We wanted to see how that looked. Just trying to find combinations, sometimes depending on the opponent, depending upon who's in form and who's playing well for us."
Jaqua isn't in a bad scoring drought. He got the tying goal on Aug. 23 at Houston, four matches ago.
"I'm disappointed not being able to play much [Saturday]," Jaqua said, "but it's the way it is. I respect our coaches and I just try to contribute any way I can. I hope to get back in the starting lineup soon, we'll see whether that happens or not. But I just keep plugging and keep working hard in practice."
Seattle moved Freddie Ljungberg to forward and Sebastien Le Toux started for Jaqua Saturday. Jaqua had to finish the Toronto game despite having blurry vision and memory loss from the knock he took, because Seattle had already used all three of its substitutes.
José Miguel Romero: 206-464-2409 or email@example.com
UPDATE - 8:54 PM
Sounders lose to another expansion team
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