Before the Sounders left Vancouver over the weekend, coach Sigi Schmid answered a few questions about tonight's CONCACAF Champions League match at Comunicaciones of Guatemala:
Q: Have you noticed that it is especially difficult to sweep the two-game sets in group play?A: Obviously the team that loses the first game is always a little more motivated going into the second one. I think that’s an important aspect. This is a game that’s obviously very important for Comunicaciones: They’ve got six points. They know we have nine. They want to get the three points at home, so that’s going to force them to open up the game a little bit. Hopefully, by them opening up the game that will open up opportunities for us as well to attack. So, it’s really a game that I think both teams want to get something positive out of. And the first game isn’t as important because of that.
Q: Is there any particular incentive to finish first in the group?A: The main thing is just to get through. And if you can get through in first, all the better. We want to make sure that we can get through. Our schedule congestion is something where the sooner we know we’re through, the sooner we can make decisions appropriate to what we need to do in the other games.
Below, a quick look at tonight's match:
SOUNDERS FC (MLS)COMUNICACIONES (GUATEMALA) 7 p.m., Estadio Cementos Progreso, Guatemala City.TV: Fox Soccer.HEAD TO HEAD: The Sounders won the Aug. 16 meeting, 4-1, in Seattle. The Sounders got two goals from Mike Fucito, one from Brad Evans and an own goal. Jairo Arreola scored for Comunicaciones.NOTES: This is each team’s fifth match in group play of CONCACAF Champions League. Seattle (3-1) leads Group D with nine points, followed by Comunicaciones and Monterrey (Mexico), both 2-2 with six points, and Herediano (Costa Rica) 1-3 and three points. The top two clubs in the group advance to the quarterfinals. Seattle will advance with a win or draw tonight. …Seattle is 15-6-9 in Major League Soccer. Comunicaciones is 5-3-4 in its domestic season. … Among the Comunicaciones players who represented Guatemala in the CONCACAF Gold Cup are defender Carlos Castrillo, midfielder Jose Javier Del Aguila, forward Jairo Arreola, and goalkeeper Juan Paredes, while defender Adolfo Machado played for Panama. … Comunicaciones was founded in 1949. Nicknamed “The Creams,” they are considered the second most successful club in Guatemala, behind rival Municipal. … Comunicaciones qualified for Champions League by winning the 2010 Guatemalan Aperture and the 2011 Clausura championships. QUOTABLE: “They want to get the three points at home, so that’s going to force them to open up the game a little bit. Hopefully, by them opening up the game, that will open up opportunities for us as well to attack.” – Sounders coach Sigi Schmid.NEXT: The Sounders return to the MLS regular season at 4:30 p.m. Saturday at New England. They conclude Champions League group play Oct. 18 when Monterrey visits CenturyLink Field.