The most memorable play in the Seattle Sounders’ 1-0 win over Montreal on Saturday was Clint Dempsey’s decisive header.
But after that, the play that fans probably remember most vividly was a long run down the pitch by forward Oalex Anderson, who beat everyone to a loose ball, split two Impact players and raced into the penalty area, where he lost possession.
Those who saw the play were impressed with the athleticism, but many also were distressed by what they see as selfishness — or at least bad decision-making — in Anderson not laying the ball off to teammates running on either side.
Meeting the media Tuesday for the first time since the match, Anderson explained.
“To be honest, I wanted to pass the ball,” he said. “But the defender was going with the two guys, and it was creating space for me to run. I think I could have run straight and then keep it coming and then square it across. That’s what I’m trying to do because the defender was going with my teammates, and it was creating space for me. But to be honest, I wanted to pass it.”
As it turned out, the failure to create a second goal didn’t cost Seattle its first win. And that left the Sounders in a better mood as they trained Tuesday.
“Sometimes, you don’t even ask yourself how you played, you’re just happy that you got the three points,” coach Sigi Schmid said. “But that’s life. I think it’s good not to see that goose egg next to our name. Now we just have to build from there.”
The Sounders will be off Wednesday before returning Thursday to continue preparations for their nationally televised match Sunday at Houston.
Schmid indicated that although the club is in generally good health, midfielder Erik Friberg (knee) is likely to miss his third consecutive match.
“He’s making progress,” Schmid said. “You can say an injury timeline is ‘X,’ because that’s what it is most of the time. But everybody’s different. Some guys are ready quicker, and some guys it takes a little bit longer. And now for him, it’s probably taking a little bit longer than maybe a general timeline. … When exactly he’ll return I’m not quite sure, but the most important thing is for him to be healthy.”
Also unclear is the role of forward Jordan Morris, who was out of the starting lineup Saturday for the first time in his rookie season.
“We’ll see,” Schmid said. “We’ll see where we’re at as a team. I think that’s one of those gut-feeling things.”