Defense keys Sounders’ four-game win streak

May 8, 2012, 9:13 AM | Updated: 10:24 am


Midfielder Osvaldo Alonso has been key to the Sounders' four-game win streak, but he might rest Wednesday against FC Dallas. (AP)


If the other guys don’t score, you can’t lose a soccer game. Seattle Sounders FC are playing sensational defense the first two months of the MLS season. The “rave green” have five shutouts and have allowed just three goals in eight matches.

“It’s just a life-or-death attitude,” midfielder Brad Evans said. “Once you get these shutouts, you get hungrier for more.”

Seattle’s stout defense is certainly a credit to the back four, but coach Sigi Schmid points to the forwards’ hard work as well.

“We always talk how the team plays out a certain direction,” Schmid said during our Coach’s Corner show. “We want to force the ball to a certain player and that’s where the forwards come into play.”

Another key to the Sounders’ success is the relentless pursuit of holding midfielder Osvaldo Alonso. He just flat out wins every 50-50 ball on the pitch.

Schmid said there’s a chance Alonso will rest Wednesday night at FC Dallas. He has played a full 90 minutes in almost every Seattle match this spring. Schmid might use 22-year-old Andy Rose at Alonso’s position.

Seattle’s defense and four-game win streak will both get a stern test against Dallas. While that club is only 3-4-3 in MLS competition, it has plenty of firepower.

“Yeah, they have Brek Shea and still have [Fabian] Castillo, who’s got a ton of speed,” Schmid said. “They’re a little hard to play against because they’re aggressive offensively and rely on speed a lot.”

Dallas, though, is without Daniel Hernandez and Blas Perez, who drew red cards in a 2-nil loss at Colorado.

The Sounders hope to get Alvaro Fernandez some playing time Wednesday. If not, then at home Saturday against Real Salt Lake. “Flaco” has missed the past two games while nursing a quad injury.

Seattle once again has Bryan Meredith in goal while Michael Gspurning recovers from a hip injury. Veteran Andrew Weber is the backup keeper.

Seattle Sounders FC

Seattle Sounders Stefan Frei...

The Associated Press

Chú, Rusnák propel Seattle Sounders past Rapids 2-1

Léo Chú scored a first-half goal, Albert Rusnák added an insurance score in the second half and the Seattle Sounders defeated the Colorado Rapids 2-1.

3 days ago

Seattle Sounders Alex Roldan...

The Associated Press

Roldan’s goal helps Seattle Sounders draw 1-1 with Dallas

Alex Roldan scored in the second half to rally the Seattle Sounders to a 1-1 draw with FC Dallas on Saturday night.

7 days ago

Seattle Sounders Portland Timbers Evander...

The Associated Press

Sounders draw 2-2 as Timbers rally from two goals down

Dairon Asprilla and Evander da Silva Ferreira scored three minutes apart in the second half after Seattle's Léo Chú was sent off for a red card and the Portland Timbers rallied for a 2-2 draw with the Sounders.

21 days ago

Seattle Sounders...

The Associated Press

Rusnák scores in 90th minute, Sounders beat Austin 2-1

Albert Rusnák scored a go-ahead goal in the 90th minute and the Seattle Sounders beat Austin FC 2-1 on Wednesday night to snap a four-game winless streak.

24 days ago

Seattle Sounders Raúl Ruidíaz...

The Associated Press

Yeimar scores for both teams, Sounders draw with Minnesota

Defender Yeimar Andrade gave the Seattle Sounders a first-half lead, but his own-goal early in the second half helped Minnesota United gain a 1-1 draw on Sunday.

27 days ago

Atlanta United Seattle Sounders...

The Associated Press

Giakoumakis, Guzan lead Atlanta United over Sounders 2-0

Giorgos Giakoumakis scored a goal in each half, Brad Guzan saved two shots to earn a clean sheet and Atlanta United defeated the Seattle Sounders 2-0 on Sunday night.

1 month ago

Defense keys Sounders’ four-game win streak