Soccer journey comes full circle for Sounders goalie
When Marcus Hahnemann hung up his keeper’s gloves last year in England, he thought he had made his final save in a professional soccer match. Tonight, the local product will be in the nets when the Seattle Sounders host C.D. Marathon of Honduras.
Hahnemann, 40, starred at Kentridge and Newport high schools, Seattle Pacific University then the old USL Sounders. He backed up Kasey Keller on the U.S. National team then made a name for himself in Great Britain as a starter for Reading, Wolverhampton and Everton.
Now he has a chance to check off another item on his soccer bucket list.
“When you step on the field it becomes real,” said Hahnemann, who worked his way onto the Sounders’ bench for the past two MLS games. “Being a sub, at least it’s closer, but actually playing is, I think, the ultimate. Most of the fans would give their right arm, their firstborn to step on that field – I’m one of them.”
Sigi Schmid told me in our Coach’s Corner interview that Hahnemann has earned the right to start.
“I’m sure it’s going to be emotional for him as he steps on the pitch,” Schmid said. “He’s trained, he’s sharp and has done a lot of good work. I’m really happy for Marcus.”
With Seattle already assured a spot in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals, Schmid is able to give many of his reserves some playing time tonight at CenturyLink Field.
Michael Seamon played central midfield in college, but starts at the right defensive back position this evening after a good showing coming off the bench in the Real Salt Lake match.
“It’s really valuable playing time for me because we’re coming towards the end of the season,” said the 24-year-old Seamon. “The playoffs are coming up then the offseason, and you have to play well to leave a good memory in the back of [the coaches’] minds.”
Schmid said he will also use David Estrada and Steve Zakuani in order to give starting midfielders some well-earned rest.
Seattle closes out the MLS regular season Sunday night against the Los Angeles Galaxy in Southern California then launches the Western Conference playoffs against Real Salt Lake either Oct. 31 or Nov. 3.
Ross Fletcher and Kasey Keller call the Sounders-Marathon match at 7 p.m. on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM.