Sounders face first road test in the other Washington

Apr 5, 2012, 5:18 PM | Updated: Apr 6, 2012, 8:50 am
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Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said forward Eddie Johnson should be available to come off the bench against D.C. United on Saturday. Johnson missed Seattle's last game due to a hip injury. (AP)
(AP)

After winning two of three at home, the Seattle Sounders FC cross the country for a Saturday night MLS match against D.C. United.

Seattle was a very good road team in 2011, going 9-3-5. That’s something head coach Sigi Schmid would love to duplicate this season.

“We’ve always been a good road team ever since I’ve been here, Schmid said. “That’s because we try and take the same philosophy on the road as we play at home.”

The Sounders are coming off a 1-nil loss to the San Jose Earthquakes. Schmid told me in our Coach’s Corner interview he wants to see more possession time from his side.

“I think against San Jose we didn’t do a good job of holding onto the ball,” he said. “Part of it was due to their pressure because they were a team that was highly motivated. So we’ve got to get back to holding onto the ball, because possession creates opportunities for us.”

Seattle’s chances improve with the return of two injured players who missed the last game. Schmid said midfielder Brad Evans is close to 100 percent and forward Eddie Johnson should be available to come off the bench.

Seattle continues to hold out Mauro Rosales, who’s recovering from a sprained knee. Central defender Jhon Kennedy Hurtado hurt his pelvic bone in the San Jose match and might give way to Jeff Parke.

After a slow start, D.C. United administered a 4-1 drubbing on visiting F.C. Dallas last week. Brazilian Maicon Santos and youngster Nick DeLeon had outstanding games.

The man who makes D.C. tick, though, is veteran Dwayne De Rosario.

“He’s one of the best players in the league and you have to respect him,” Parke said. “He moves well, is a good passer, and has good speed. It will be a tough game but I think we’ll be ready to make it difficult on him.”

Matt Johnson anchors the pregame show at 4 p.m. Saturday. Ross Fletcher and Kasey Keller call the action starting at 4:30 on 97.3 KIRO FM.

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