Sounders FC’s match at Chicago on Saturday will mark the 100th MLS regular-season game in franchise history.
Over that time, the Sounders have gone 47-25-27. Those 168 points are second most in the league over that period; and their 139 goals are third most.
“I’m proud of our accomplishments through the first 100 games,” general manager Adrian Hanauer said. “… Forty-seven wins, three playoff appearances, a lot of good entertainment for our fans.
“That makes me really proud to have been part of that. We have a lot more work ahead of us in the next 100 games. Hopefully, we’ll win more of them.”
The Sounders’ first MLS game was a 3-0 home win over New York on March 19, 2009. Seven of the players who appeared in that game remain with the club: Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Zach Scott, Steve Zakuani, Osvaldo Alonso, Brad Evans, Fredy Montero and Roger Levesque.
Of all the games played so far, that opener remains Hanauer’s favorite.
“I can’t think of something that meant more to me, that was more emotional,” he said. “There was so much work that went into getting to opening day; work from people who have been doing this, have been in the community, for 30-40 years. I feel like everybody was sort of part of getting us to opening night. And then to have it end up as such an entertaining game.
“There are a lot of games that I feel I don’t get to appreciate because they are really tight, (but that three-goal margin allowed me) to step back and look at things and appreciate it a little bit.”
Sounders coach Sigi Schmid also recalled the opener as his most memorable match. However, he noted others.
“The win at Salt Lake last year, the comeback in Kansas City; there’s a lot of other games in there that definitely are memorable, as well,” he said. “(The 2009 win at Columbus) was a good one; I think we went back a couple of times and won there. There was (Blaise) Nkufo’s hat trick, as well. Going into L.A. and winning when we went there early on. But again, it’s more a reflection that we’re doing consistently good work.”
Fittingly, the Sounders’ 100th regular-season game will come against the only other contender for consideration as Major League Soccer’s most successful expansion franchise.
The Fire went 56-36-7 over its first 99 games, from 1998-2001. However, the league was only 2 years old when Chicago joined, and record comparisons are difficult because there were no draws over its first two seasons.
Hanauer said he had little interest in such historical comparisons.
And Evans, one of the original Sounders, was more interested in the game ahead than the 99 behind.
“I hope we can make it a ‘W,’ ” he said. “That’s pretty much it. Game 100 was going to come sooner or later, obviously.”
The Sounders trained Thursday morning at Starfire Sports Complex in Tukwila before taking a flight to Chicago. The team will train this morning at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill. … Midfielder Mauro Rosales (knee) and defender Adam Johansson (hamstring) are expected to be available Saturday after missing the last four games. Goalkeeper Michael Gspurning, who missed work this week with flu-related issues, is expected to be ready. Schmid said defender Patrick Ianni, who has started all five games, is questionable with a back injury.Don Ruiz: 253-597-8808 firstname.lastname@example.org blog.thenewstribune.com/soccer Twitter: @donruiztnt