On the heels of a 1-0 loss devoid of energy, Seattle fans can be forgiven for wanting change. But who will be the savior? Looking down the Sounders’ bench, there are not a lot of likely candidates.
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Injuries have already taken a toll on the offensive options on Seattle’s roster. Surgery may be on the horizon for Mike Fucito, who delivered one of Seattle’s three wins with an opportunistic goal against Kansas City. Pat Noonan, never the fastest player to begin with, missed three matches earlier this season with a hamstring injury.
That leaves Roger Levesque, Sanna Nyassi, and Miguel Montano on the bench to come on and bring energy, which is the quality the Sounders are sorely lacking.
Will we see one of the three when Seattle takes the field at home against the New England Revolution next Saturday? Only time will tell.
One thing is certain: this is a team in the midst of a free fall. With only two matches left until the World Cup, that break couldn’t come early enough for the Sounders.
"We had some good chances in the first half and didn't capitalize on our chances," Seattle coach Sigi Schmid said. "If you give up a goal and you don't score, you lose the game."
After 11 games last season, Seattle had a 4-2-5 record and 17 points. This year, that record drops to 3-5-3 with a meager 12 points. The problem is clear for all to see – only nine goals scored on the season.
The scoring deficiency was laid bare again in Commerce City.
Against Colorado, Conor Casey’s chipped goal looked like a hurdle to high to overcome for the Seattle Sounders on the road.
Seattle only managed one shot on goal in the altitude of Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, a loose-ball volley from distance from emergency center midfielder Patrick Ianni. In the other phases of the game, Seattle did not look dangerous at all.
Matched up against the physically gifted Marvell Wynne, Steve Zakuani disappeared from the match. Noonan didn’t fare much better on the other side of the 4-3-3 formation. Seattle’s abysmal conversion rate from corner kicks sunk even lower, as four yielded no goals. Even a dangerous free kick in the late stages of the match was not put on frame by Freddie Ljungberg, who has only one assist and no goals on the season.
It was the second straight loss for the Sounders, who have won only once in their past seven matches. After only losing seven matches in thirty games last season, the team has lost five times in 11 matches in 2010.
The result is disappointing for Seattle. When the Sounders marched into the new Red Bull Stadium and walked away with a 1-0 win, it looked like the start of something big. Now, after yet another loss, the match against New York is looking more like the exception than the rule.
Andrew Winner covers the Seattle Sounders for MLSsoccer.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or twitter.com/andrewewinner.