Skip to main content
Advertising

Originally published April 20, 2014 at 5:38 PM | Page modified April 20, 2014 at 6:11 PM

  • Share:
           
  • Comments (0)
  • Print

Sounders on course to be fouled a record number of times

The Sounders are on pace to be fouled about 700 times this season after suffering a franchise-most 26 in Saturday’s physical 2-1 road win against Chivas USA.


Seattle Times staff reporter

Latest from the Sounders FC blog

Get Adobe Flash player

Reader Comments
Hide / Show comments
Just one more reason why MLS will always be a clown league ... atrocious league oversight of its refs. It's... MORE
Everyone should know by now that throughout the league the word is to beat Seattle you have to beat _ell out of them.... MORE
After 5 years, I am loosing interest in MLS. I enjoy a fluid game but the MLS is a hack fest. I can't really sit... MORE

advertising

CARSON, Calif. – An early pattern has developed into a disturbing trend.

The Sounders are getting fouled — a lot. And not just the stars.

Coming into the year, Seattle had never been fouled more than 23 times in a game over five MLS seasons. Seven weeks in, the team has already eclipsed that number three times in 2014, none more than the 26 suffered in Saturday’s 2-1 comeback win against Chivas USA.

Midfielder Brad Evans said the realization has painfully set in that the behavior looks likely to last.

“It’s going to be part of the game,” he said, “and we have to play through it. I thought that we handled it pretty well. ... We kept our composure, kept our heads.”

Clint Dempsey had been a popular target in previous weeks, but it was Obafemi Martins in the opposition’s crosshairs at the StubHub Center. Martins was hacked down in seven instances, which tied a franchise record and equaled the amount of fouls received by the entire Chivas USA team.

Coach Sigi Schmid said such repetitive fouling should have led to a red card for the hosts, perhaps more so than the ejection that was given in the second half to Marco Delgado for a dangerous tackle.

Martins, for his part, declined to blame referee Ismail Elfath for the rough treatment.

“The fact that I’m OK means that there is nothing to complain about,” the forward said. “I don’t like to talk about the referees, because they’re doing their job.”

Schmid, though, lobbied on his behalf: “Nobody gets a yellow for repetitive fouling on Oba? That’s amazing to me.”

The Sounders were fouled 25 times apiece in home games Week 1 and 2 against Kansas City and Toronto, respectively. That rate has continued, and Seattle is on pace to be fouled about 700 times this season — an alarming figure that would obliterate the team record of 438 in 2012.

Evans said early yellow cards from the referee could be a solution: “Then it settles down not just that guy but the rest of the team.”

Improper PK?

The worthiness of Chivas USA’s penalty kick was in hot debate after the game, but there was another reason some felt the goal wasn’t deserved.

Forward Erick Torres, who converted the PK, appeared to stop, if not go backward, early in his run-up to the kick, which is against the spirit of FIFA rules (though not officially against the letter of the law).

“That’s why after the PK I actually ran up to (the referee) and told him it doesn’t really matter at what point in the run-up he does it,” said goalkeeper Stefan Frei.

Pineda popular with Chivas fans

Dempsey is always a showcase player on the road due to his standing with the U.S. national team, but Seattle’s Gonzalo Pineda was particularly popular with the Chivas fans.

The midfielder, of course, played for Mexico’s Chivas de Guadalajara for four years, not to mention the Mexican national team from 2004 to 2008.

“They are giving me still too much love. ... That feels good,” Pineda said.

Notes

• The Sounders kicked off the MLS Reserve League season Sunday with a 3-2 win against Chivas USA. Seattle’s goals came from Tristan Bowen (an ex-Chivas player), Chad Barrett and an own goal.

• Sounders FC’s Sean Okoli, a homegrown player from Federal Way, has been called up to training camp with the U.S. U-21 national team in Carson, Calif. Also invited is academy alum Jordan Morris, a Mercer Island native playing collegiately at Stanford. Ex-Sounder Kasey Keller will coach the goalkeepers.

• Defender Chad Marshall was unwittingly credited with his first assist of the season Saturday when a Clint Dempsey cross deflected off his hand to Lamar Neagle en route to Seattle’s opening goal. “Shoot, I’ll take it,” Marshall said with a laugh. “Why not?”

Joshua Mayers: 206-464-3184 or jmayers@seattletimes.com. On Twitter @joshuamayers.



Want unlimited access to seattletimes.com? Subscribe now!

News where, when and how you want it

Email Icon

Want free career advice? And an iPad Mini?

Want free career advice? And an iPad Mini?

Tell us about your goals and challenges and be considered for a future NWjobs career-makeover story, as well as a chance to win an iPad Mini!

Advertising

Partner Video

Advertising

The Seattle Times photographs

Seattle space needle and mountains

Purchase The Seattle Times images


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►