Even though Celtic manager Neil Lennon said he will go with a younger squad in today's friendly at Qwest Field, Sounders coach Sigi Schmid implies that the Bhoys are likely to give a better effort than did Boca Juniors, which fell to Seattle 3-0 in this season's earlier international friendly.
"When you play a team when they’re in their off-season or they’ve just finished their season, a lot of times you don’t get a good level of competition," Schmid said yesterday. "When you’re playing teams when they’re in their preseason preparation, I think the competition is always good because you’ve got young players who are trying to make their name, make their way forward in the coach’s mind, you’ve got the older players trying to get themselves fit and get ready for the season. So from that standpoint I think they’re good games because they’re competitive games because the opponent is at a stage when they’re trying to build."
A quick look at today's match:
CELTIC FCSEATTLE SOUNDERS FCNoon, Qwest Field.TV: ESPN.RADIO: 97.3 FM (1210 AM in Spanish). NOTES: Sounders designated player Blaise Nkufo is expected to get his first start today. However, Kasey Keller, Nate Jaqua, Freddie Ljungberg and Michael Seamon are expected to be held out due to various injuries. … This is the third game of Celtic’s 2010 North American tour. They opened with a 1-0 loss at the Philadelphia Union, and lost 3-1 to Manchester United in Toronto on Sunday. … Celtic has won 34 Scottish Cups and 42 league championships, but the Bhoys(((cq))) are 0-3 in Seattle. They lost 2-1 to the NASL Sounders in 1981 in the Kingdome; 4-0 to Manchester United at Qwest Field; and 4-2 to Chelsea in 2004 at Qwest. … The club manager is Neil Lennon, who started for Celtic in their 2003 and 2004 Seattle friendlies. Aiden McGready is the only remaining Celtic player who appeared in the 2004 match. … Four members of the Celtic travel roster played in the 2010 World Cup: Georgios Samaras (Greece), Cha Du Ri and Ki Sung Yeung (South Korea), and Efrain Juarez (Mexico), who joined the club Saturday after signing a four-year deal. … There is one American on the roster: goalkeeper Dominic Cervi, who was selected by Chicago in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft, but did not sign with the Fire. … Season-ticket holders are reminded that this is the “B” ticket on your season package. Sounders FC says its third and final international friendly will be announced soon. … Tickets remain available. NEXT: The Sounders return to league play at 7:30 p.m. July 25 when the Colorado Rapids visit.