Tag Archives: Chad Marshall

Seattle Love

Official Seattle Sounders Reporter

By Ashley Savage // @savage_hart

I’ve been quiet in my game summaries since Seattle lost at home to Portland on July 21st. After that game, I wrote an article that generally said that losing to Portland wasn’t the end of the world, but the Sounders were not alright. After squeaking out a 1-0 victory on the road in Houston the following week, nothing has gone right for the Sounders in every match that’s followed.

Image Credit: Jill Peck

In the month of August, the Sounders are winless and have gathered only 2 points in 4 games. The Rave Green lost 3-2 at home to Sporting Kansas City, who at the time were second from the bottom in the Western Conference. While I have a great deal of respect for Kansas City as a club, that was a game the Sounders should have taken 3 points from. But they let in 3 goals at home, an occurrence fans are starting to see often, and couldn’t capitalize on their own offensive chances.

Photo Credit: Jill Peck

Then Bruce Arena and the New England Revolution came to town. While New England is on an upswing, this too should have been a sunny Sunday afternoon for Sounders fans. A can of Rueben’s brew, some boom-boom-clap, 3 points and back to business. But instead, the game tied 3-3. Six goals in the back of the Sounders’ net in 2 games. And then they took to the road.

A double game week on the road is never an easy task, especially for a squad absolutely gutted by injuries like the Sounders are. But taking another 3 goal beat down in Salt Lake and not even recording a shot on goal is embarrassing. It’s uncharacteristic. As Brian Schmetzer has said recently to the media, it is not the Sounders way of play. So again, the Rave Green marched on to visit another Western Conference foe: the Los Angeles Galaxy.

Down in Carson, the Sounders lineup was still missing 3 to 4 key starters and facing a Team Zlatan that was shining with fancy new TAM/GAM players (that would be DPs anywhere else in the league, mind you). But the Galaxy gave the Sounders a much needed break in the 6th minute when Daniel Steres was red carded for DOGSO (denying an obvious goal scoring opportunity). This should have been a golden opportunity for the Sounders. A man advantage, even against a team led by Zlatan, should basically guarantee 3 points.

But much to the dismay of commentator Taylor Twellman and Sounders fans alike, Seattle did not high-press the opportunity. Instead, they sat back and did not alter their game plan in the slightest. In the 42nd minute, Raul Ruidiaz finally put the ball in the back of the net, but the man known as Zlatan leveled the score only 3 minutes later. The Sounders midfield gave Sebastian Llletget plenty of time and space to send in a lofted ball to the most towering Ferrari in all of MLS and this happened:

Zlatan would go on to draw his own penalty and convert from the spot in the 65th minute. Then, in the 82nd, David Bingham decided to play as recklessly as the Sounders defense has for the past month and a half and do this:

Own Goal struck once again and became the only reason the Sounders, who were up a man from the 6th minute, took a point home from LA. Seattle now sit in 5th place and face Portland away next week and the Galaxy back home at CenturyLink the following week. No slouch of a schedule on the back of what is nearly the worst run in Sounders history. However, the worst run in Sounders history ended with the firing of Sigi Schmidt in 2016. Falling in the standings, letting in 11 goals in 4 games and unable to keep a healthy squad has left Sounders fans wondering what in the world can turn things around.

So… what is going on in Seattle?

Well, the first thing to note is Chad Marshall retired. While I realize that happened at the end of May, it’s impact has been felt in more than just the on-field play. Marshall was the leader on the field even without the captain’s armband. Before him, Ozzie Alonso kept things in check. With both of these impactful leaders departing this season, the squad is looking around (literally) for someone to lead and finding no one.

The second note is our signings have been a bust. Joevin Jones has returned a shell of the defender he led the league in assists in 2016. His play has been inconsistent at best. Xavier Arreaga, the DP center back Seattle vastly overpaid, has shown no chemistry alongside Kim Kee Hee and made several mistakes that have lead to scoring opportunities for opponents.

Before the summer transfer window closed, former MLS player Luis Silva and Argentine Emanual Cecchini were brought in. Cecchini has been hyped to fans as a CDM to fill the Ozzie void, while Luis Silva is simply a more seasoned Harry Shipp-style winger. Neither of these signings fit the most pressing needs of the Sounders and General Manager Garth Lagerway continued to state to the media that he “likes our squad the way it is.”

Injuries have been the third note of issue for the Sounders. Brad Smith and Kelvin Leerdam have missed a combined 11 games as of late. Victor Rodriguez has been out due to injury for 13 games so far this season, Raul Ruidiaz has only played 6 of the last 11 league games and Gustav Svensson has only logged 4 full 90 minute games since week 9 of the season. Oh, and Roman Torres went and got himself suspended for 10 games for taking some sort of illegal vitamin.

The final note of issue facing the Sounders has been the gradual decline and recent exit of co-owner Joe Roth. While the Sounders front office recently introduced 11 Seattle-based families (including Macklemore and his wife and Ciara and Russel Wilson) to take over Roth’s majority share, fans were quick to speculate that Roth’s lack of recent involvement and exit from the club were most likely a key factor in the lack of major signings lately.

Sounders fans tend to have two pools of thought: Rave Green ‘Til I Die or What Have You Done For Me Lately? The former will continue to support, cheer and love the Sounders. They are the first to point out that the last time Seattle went on a run like this, they won MLS Cup. The latter demand a DP signing when things get rough, sell their tickets after what was the worst 4 game home stretch in Sounders history and insist that Brian Schmetzer isn’t the man to lead this team.

Both groups come from a place of Seattle Love. They love a team that plays hard and with passion for the full 90. They know the history of a team that has tallied the second most points in all of MLS for the past decade. For both of these groups it isn’t necessarily MLS Cup or bust, but play hard. Win games you should win. Score goals and try to keep less than a dozen out of your net in a 2 week stretch of games. But for many of the reasons I listed previously, we’ve all been greatly disappointed.

Featured image: @SoundersFC on Twitter

Follow and chat with me on Twitter // @savage_hart

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A Last Dance with Chad Marshall

Official Seattle Sounders Reporter

By Ashley Savage // @savage_hart

Chad Marshall retires as the most decorated MLS defender of all time.

MLS rookies at draft day. From left to right: Clint Dempsey, Ned Grabavoy and Chad Marshall.

By the numbers, Chad Marshall was an incredibly dominant defender with 409 games played, 26 goals scored, 16 assists, and 35,843 minutes played. The only player in MLS history to win Defender of the Year 3 times (2008, 2009 and 2014), 4 times MLS All-Star, 4 times MLS Best XI, 4 times Supporters Shield Winner and 2 times MLS Cup Champion.

Marshall walks away from MLS with the 2nd most games and minutes played by a field player in history. He is decorated, accomplished and undeniably an amazing player. But there was so much more to what made and continues to make, Chad Marshall a great human being.

In July 2014, my husband and I got married the night before the Portland Timbers were traveling to Seattle for the one and only time that season. As an inaugural Sounders season ticket holder and boisterous Rave Green fan, my husband wanted to tie this in to our big day. We decided that we would wear our wedding attire to the game and bring as many friends and family as possible.

Through our season ticket holder benefits, we were able to watch the last 20 minutes of the game from field level and allowed to linger after the final whistle to high-five players and watch the post-game events. As we were relishing in the Sounders 2-0 victory and taking in all the sights, Chad Marshall spotted me wearing my big, dirty and previously-beautiful dress. He made eye contact and pointed at me. I waved, thinking it was so cool he even had noticed, and he began to walk over to us.

“You’re wearing a wedding dress! Did you guys just get married?” he asked with a huge grin.

“Yesterday.” My husband and I said in unison, like two star-struck fans.

“That’s awesome! Let’s take a picture!” Chad said. So we did!

Photo Credit: Ashley Hart Savage

In that moment, after a massive win against a major rival, Chad Marshall was so down to earth and kind. He made our day (and my husband’s screen saver for several years) and made a lasting impact on us that transcended what we saw of him as a soccer player.

Four years later, my husband and I were attending the Sounders Season Ticket Member Celebration with our 2-year-old son in tow. He was too young to understand how cool it was to attend this event. He loved sitting on the team bench, running around the field at CenturyLink and people watching all the big kids, but he had no idea who any of the players were. He just ran around saying “play soccer!” and that was enough for us.

During the event, we were given the opportunity to meet team players, which was such a special opportunity for my husband and myself. As we were waiting in line, we realized that Chad Marshall was one of the players posing for pictures and signing autographs. When we came face to face with him, I awkwardly asked, “Can you take a picture with our son?” to which he swiftly responded “Absolutely!”

Photo Credit: Ashley Hart Savage

We knew our son, Sawyer, wouldn’t understand how cool this moment was. But we did. It was a full circle moment having stood with Marshall on that same field 4 years earlier in our wedding attire and now with our son, who had attended every Sounders match that fell outside of nap and bedtime since he was 3 months old, taking a picture with Chad Marshall.

My husband and I don’t know Marshall. These two encounters are all we have to base our opinion of who he is off the field and outside of all the record-breaking stats. But those two moments highlighted to us what so many of his peers have said about him publicly in the wake of his retirement: that the man off the field was just as much a GOAT as the player.

Thank you, Chad. For everything.

Featured image: @SoundersFC

Follow and chat with me on Twitter // @savage_hart

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Another Seattle Sounders / Portland Timber Derby

Jennifer Denton - Seattle Sounders/mlsfemale
Official Sounders Reporter

By Jennifer Denton // @darkwynds

June 30: 2-3 Loss

This Saturday’s game was pretty much the entire Seattle Sounders’ season so far in 90 minutes.  There were great moments, moments that left me scratching my head, moments of yelling at the ref but in the end, again the Sounders lost the game.

The good parts.  Yay, the Sounders scored a couple of goals, finally in double digits.  The offense played as more of a unit than they have all year.  Of course, with the good comes the bad.  The defense is still having a lot of problems.  We can’t finish most of the shots taken.  Passing is still a massive problem, though better.  But at the end of the game, the Sounders lost again.  So let us go over the game in more detail.

Before the game, the Sounders announced our newest DP signing, Peruvian striker Raul Ruidiaz.  Raul will not be able to start until July 10th.  Currently still down Gustav Svensson and Roman Torres due to the World Cup.  Also, Stefan Frei due to injury (grumbles about Alan Gordon). The first half was back and forth without a goal scored.  There were moments of hope, but nothing came from them.  Again, passing seems to be an issue still and set pieces.

Now the second half was a lot more exciting.  In the span of 30 minutes, 5 goals were scored.  Starting in the 48’ Portland’s Larrys Mabiala scores for Portland.  Just 3 minutes later, Victor Rodriguez scored for the Sounders.  In the 57’, Portland’s Samuel Armenteros scores to retake the lead.  Less than 10 minutes later, Chad Marshall pulls the Sounders level.  The game-winning goal was scored by Larrys Mabiala.

This game had a lot of ups and downs.  There were moments where you could see the Sounders of the last 2 years.  The window is rapidly closing on the playoffs for the Sounders.  We will be getting back some of our injured players in the next few days/weeks.

Ruidiaz will be a much-needed addition.  There are rumors that more moves are going to be made after the World Cup.  Not sure when Roman Torres will get back since he had been injured during the final group stage game.

Sounders will play Wednesday, July 4th in Colorado.

See you in the terraces.

Featured image courtesy: @SoundersFC

Follow and chat with me on twitter // @darkwynds

Check us out on Instagram @mlsfemale

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MINNESOTA’S HOPES AT GETTING A POINT GET BLOCKED LIKE THE SUN

Kaitlyn O'Rourke - Seattle Sounders/mlsfemale
Seattle Sounders Key Contributor

By Kaitlyn O’Rourke 

Sunday August 20: 4-3 Win

The Seattle Sounders faced off against Minnesota United just 15 days after their 4-0 rout in Minnesota. This time though; it was a very different story. The Sounders had to fight for this one, they had to come from behind and keep pushing for their well deserved 3 points.

Stefan Frei

Kelvin Leerdam–Roman Torres–Chad Marshall–Joevin Jones

Ozzie AlonsoGustav Svensson 

Nicolas LodeiroClint DempseyCristian Roldan

Jordan Morris 

Seattle’s shutout streak ended at 421 minutes on a Minnesota goal by Ethan Finley in the 21st minute. Chad Marshall responded 10 minutes later on a cross from Nicolas Lodeiro to even the score at 1-1. The Sounders couldn’t grab a game winner before the 80th minute (this is Seattle after all) which carried the game into what I like to call ice-chewing-nervous-pacing-run-to-the-bathroom-500-times zone.

But, like what always seems to happen (this is Seattle after all) the Sounders got their shot at a game winner in the 94th minute. After a handball in the box, Clint Dempsey scored a PK to keep the unbeaten streak alive (9 games!!)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- I love the Seattle Sounders but they WILL give me a heart attack one day. Evidence: this season Seattle has scored 5 goals after the 88th minute – 4 of those have been to tie or win a game, they’ve scored 3 (3!?) goals in the 94th minute.

Fun Facts and Notes:

  • The Sounders are in first place with 40 points!!
  • It’s Cascadia Week!! The Sounders play Vancouver Wednesday and Portland Sunday
  • I tried to come up with some eclipse humor for this but I couldn’t
  • I slipped and busted my hip while I was celebrating last night (Sounders fuzzy socks+hardwood floors=not great)

Featured image courtesy: @SoundersFC

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