Three topics concerning Sounders and international soccer came up today with coach Sigi Schmid:
On managing Clint Dempsey's minutes: There’s not a World Cup this year. There’s a Gold Cup in the summer, so we’ll weigh that. Right now because he started so much earlier than everybody else we decided to manage his minutes this week. But he leaves with us on Sunday, and he’ll full-in in Arizona.
On reports of Lamar Neagle's possibly joining the national team of Ireland: I think it would be great. I thought Lamar was very sharp today. I thought he looked very good. If the Irish national team was interested, if they wanted to call me and talk to me, certainly I would give him a good recommendation. But I don’t know what Martin O’Neill is looking for in terms of players. And it’s a question of whether that’s something Lamar wants to do 100 percent or not.
On whether thawing international relations between the USA and Cuba could affect the national-team status of Osvaldo Alonso: I really couldn’t tell you. I know that’s a political situation. And whether that’s going to impact their sports federations, whether they’re going to be a little more forthcoming with information, that’s something that obviously U.S. Soccer could look into, or Ozzie’s agent would have to look into and pursue.