Last Sunday’s 1-1 draw between the Seattle Sounders (14-13-4, 46 points) and Sporting Kansas City (12-9-9, 45 points) in Kansas City was a classic half full and half empty result. What’s the difference you ask? As with most things in life and sports, perspective. Seattle rolled out its strongest line up which included, Clint Dempsey, Obefami Martins, Brad Evans and Stefan Frei.
Sporting Kansas City on the other hand rolled out a second tier line up due to yellow card suspensions to Matt Besler and Benny Feilhaber and Wednesday’s impending US Open Cup final against Philadelphia. So on paper it looked like a Seattle win with Sporting KC missing its top eight players.
The said prophecy of a Seattle win looked like pretty much assured when central midfielder Gonzalo Pineda airmailed a long ball that found a streaking Obefami Martins who niftily received the pass and slipped the ball past Sporting KC goalkeeper Jon Kempin to give the Sounders the 1-0 lead after 32 minutes of play. It was Martin’s fifth goal in five games and a team leading 14th for the season.
But instead of pushing forward for the second goal to kill the game, the Sounders let up on the gas pedal and went into sleep walk mode. While they had some looks at goal, the Rave Green never found the killer goal.
The inability to bury the young and inexperienced Sporting KC side came back to the haunt the Sounders in the 79th minute when Sporting KC forward Dom Dwyer slotted home the equalizer after entering the game just three minutes earlier.
“It’s just a little frustrating. But when a team plays a lot of reserve players, those guys are going to put forth their best effort. They want to play. You saw a lot of them collapse on the field after the game because they left everything on the field. You can never put too much stock into that. We’ve gotten good results with a reserve team in the past. It was a situation where we weren’t as good as we needed to be in the second half. But we had two great chances with [Clint] Dempsey in front of goal. If he scores one of those two, then the game is over,” Sounders head Coach Sigi Schmid said after the game.
With the draw at Sporting Park, the Sounders remain in fourth place in the Western Conference standings and one point ahead of Sporting KC with three games to go. After losing seven straight road matches during the summer, Seattle is unbeaten in its last three games away from home.
So the question is did the Sounders earn a well deserved point or did they squander an opportunity to earn three? The Sounders return to CenturyLink Field on Oct. 4 to face the LA Galaxy in a nationally televised game on FOX Sports 1.
Click here for game highlights