Seattle Sounders FC underwent their first full scrimmages of the 2012 preseason on Thursday at Grande Sports World. Three teams of eleven players participated in two 20-minute periods in order to allow each player 40 minutes of action.
Fredy Montero kicked off the scoring with a goal in the first game. Lamar Neagle sped down the left flank and cut back to the middle where he found Montero at the top of the box. Montero struck a low shot from the top of the box that deflected off the keeper and into the roof of the net.
The second game featured a free kick goal from Mike Fucito. After an apparent handball, Montero lined up for the free kick and rolled the ball to Fucito who fired a low shot from 20-yards out that went under the wall and beat the diving keeper.
The final scrimmage saw one goal from both sides. Christian Sivebaek brought the ball up the right flank and served a cross to the middle of the box where Roger Levesque struck a one-time shot to the back of the net. Amadou Sanyang equalized late in the game on a rebound after Andy Rose’s shot from the top of the box banged off the left post.
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Adam Johansson played right back for the full 40 minutes. Steve Zakuani assumed his regular role on the left wing for both of his scrimmages. Ever Alvarado and Harlinton Gutierres also played 40 minutes each. Goalkeeper Josh Ford returned to Seattle on Wednesday night to undergo medical evaluations.
The team has Thursday afternoon off and will return to two-a-days on Friday.
Quotes from Head Coach Sigi SchmidOn the scrimmages…) “It was good because we had actually wanted to play 11 v 11 yesterday but with the late arrivals of [Adam] Johansson and the two players from Honduras we decided to push it back by a day. We wanted to get everybody playing a good 40 minutes and I thought it was good. I thought there were some good things to be seen. I thought we were reasonably sharp at times. I thought our fitness levels were good for this early in the season.”
On how the preseason has progressed compared to past years…) “I think we are sharper overall. And, again, I think it’s because of a good understanding within the team of they have a lot better idea of what their roles are and so forth. I thought certainly the one group out there that played the first 40 minutes with [Fredy] Montero and that group I thought looked very sharp at times. I thought Montero did some good things. I thought the partnership between [Adam] Johansson and [Mauro] Rosales you could already see that start to develop, which is very positive.”
On younger players who stood out…) “There’s some tough decisions for us to make so it’s tough for me to say at this stage. There were some guys who definitely helped themselves today with very good performances and the energy that they put in. I’m confident we are going to be deeper than last year. Like I said, it’s a tough decision. I wish we could hold onto 32 or 33 [players].”
Sounders FC Training Camp ParticipantsGoalkeepers: *Josh Ford, Michael Gspurning, Bryan Meredith, Andrew Weber.Defenders: Ever Alvarado, Marc Burch, Andrew Duran, Wes Feighner, Leo Gonzalez, Harlinton Gutierres, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Patrick Ianni, Adam Johansson, Jeff Parke, Tim Pontius, *Michael Tetteh, Zach Scott.Midfielders: Osvaldo Alonso, Jason Banton, Servando Carrasco, Alex Caskey, David Estrada, Brad Evans, Alvaro Fernandez, Roger Levesque, Lamar Neagle, Mauro Rosales, Andy Rose, Amadou Sanyang, Michael Seamon, Christian Sivebaek, Andrew Vanzie, Steve Zakuani. Forwards: Cordell Cato, Mike Fucito, Fredy Montero, Sammy Ochoa, Babayele Sodade, *O'Brian White.
*In Seattle for Rehab/Medical Evaluations
**Sammy Ochoa stayed in Seattle with his wife who is expecting their second child soon