Cristian Roldan discusses controversial red card in Sunday’s match vs. LAFC.
Christian Roldan had his red card from last weekend’s game rescinded on Wednesday, making the Sounders’ midfielder available for Saturday’s game at Minnesota United.
The team said the Independent Review Panel unanimously overturned the one-game suspension and accompanying fine for the violent conduct red card Roldan received in the 18th minute of Sunday’s 1-1 draw against LAFC.
Sounders general manager Garth Lagerway, speaking to reporters after the team’s practice on Wednesday, acknowledged the difficulty in making a red-card decision given the circumstances.
“They have a very difficult job. The call that they made on the field was understandable,” Lagerway said. “By the letter of the law, Cristian did make contact with the face of (Eduard) Atuesta, and I also understand why a VAR review would uphold that decision on the field.
“The Independent Review Panel... were able to deliberate and eventually reach a different conclusion.”
Being able to play against Minnesota is special for Roldan considering it is the first time he will face former Sounders Ozzie Alonso since Alonso left Seattle as a free agent in the offseason.
“I’m happy that I’ll be able to compete against Ozzie,” Roldan said. “He was a mentor of mine... A bunch of different emotions in the last couple of days, very excited to play with my teammates and help them out for the effort they put in last week.”
Sounders on the mend
The banged-up Sounders will have reinforcements for Saturday’s match as they expect five of the six players who missed their last game to be available.
Seattle was without Will Bruin (strained hamstring), Raul Ruidiaz (heel contusion), Chad Marshall (knee inflammation), Nouhou (ankle sprain), Victor Rodriguez (concussion), and Gustav Svensson (strained hamstring).
Miki Turner of Sounder at Heart reports that Bruin, Rodriguez, and Ruidiaz all went through practice without any issues. Only Svensson and Nouhou were limited during Wednesday’s training session.
The Sounders signed 17-year-old forward Alfonso Ocampo-Chavez to a homegrown contract, the 13th in club history. Ocampo-Chavez has been been with the organization since 2017, suiting up for the USL’s Tacoma Defiance and was a member of the history-making U-17 squad that became the first MLS team to win the Adidas Generation’s Cup in April.
“Alfonso is a good young player who is doing well within our developmental system,” said Sounders FC Head Coach Brian Schmetzer said in a press release. “The coaching staff is looking forward to integrating him into our team and assessing his progress toward contributing as a first team player.”