August was a pretty amazing month for the Sounders. It started with a 2-0 win over FC San Francisco of Panama to get into CONCACAF Champions League group play and concluded Tuesday with a 1-0 win over FC Dallas to advance to the U.S. Open Cup final.
In between there was a 2-1 win that gave Sporting Kansas City its first loss in its new stadium, a 4-1 rout of Comuniciaciones, a 1-0 win at Dallas, a 1-0 win at Monterrey, a 6-2 mauling of Columbus. The only imperfection was a scoreless draw against Chivas USA.
Much credit to the players of course, but general manager Adrian Hanauer also had appropriate praise for coach Sigi Schmid's masterful use of his roster.
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"Ridiculously brilliant," Hanauer said. "I’ve said it before, there’s a reason he has 150-some-odd wins. He gets a lot out of the players. One of the things I love about Sig, he’s pretty even-keeled on his playing squad. You’ve noticed we don’t make a lot of transactions and we don’t push the panic button very often or very hard. I’m a big believer that when you have a good team, they don’t really change overnight. You may get some bad results, they may not be in form, but if you’ve got a good group, because you lose a few games doesn’t mean it’s time to panic. Again: That’s what I love about Sigi. He’s got a group he believes in, they believe in the system, and everybody works together for the common goal."
Schmid was asked about his take on success in three competitions in a single month.
"It's been great because, like I said, we've won games different ways," he said. "We've won games by scoring goals. We've won a game by playing a man down and scoring goals, and we've won games by being able to defend with a lot of resolve and win 1-0. Winning in Mexico at Monterrey was certainly a great highlight, as well."
September will get off to a lazy start with no games until the Sept. 10 home league match against Real Salt Lake. Then the schedule picks up: Sept. 14 at Herediano, Sept. 17 vs. D.C. United, Sept. 20 vs. Herediano, Sept 24 at Vancouver, and Sept. 27 at Comunicaciones.