Sounders Insider

Top-of-table Sounders win on Pappa goal

colorado_150Seattle Sounders FC moved to the top of the MLS standings Wednesday night with a 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids at CenturyLink Field.

The result moved the Sounders to 7-3-2, one point ahead of Eastern leader DC United and two points clear of FC Dallas in the West. Colorado burrowed deeper into last place at 2-3-7.

But for all that difference in the standings, all that separated the Sounders and the Rapids on Wednesday was a goal by Marco Pappa in the 16th minute, when he curled a shot into the upper far corner from 20 yards out. It was his first goal of the season.

Seattle dominated the first half with 76 percent of possession. Colorado was more competitive and dangerous in the second-half, but couldn’t find the equalizer.

The Sounders were playing the middle match in a stretch of three games in nine days. Coach Sigi Schmid used the opportunity to alter his lineup, giving rare starts to Leo Gonzalez and Zach Scott along the back line, and Cristian Roldan and Andy Rose at midfield.

The match also marked the return of forward Obafemi Martins, who had missed the two previous matched with a leg injury.

The Sounders homestand concludes Sunday when the New York Red Bulls visit.

70' Colorado now has 12 shots to Sounders' 11. Also first Seattle sub: Barrett for Roldan.

Attendance: 39,757.

Second half: ... has begun. One change for Colorado: Juan Ramirez in for Gabriel Torres.

HT: Sounders 1, Colorado 0. Shots 6-3 SEA; on target 2-1 SEA; fouls 10-5 COL; duels won 52% SEA; possession 76% -- yes 76%,

16' GOAL Seattle. Marco Pappa with a nice Frisbee curl into top far corner. Seattle, 1-0.

First kick: ... has been struck. We're under way. Sounders in rave/blue. Rapids in burgundy/white.

Lineups: Sounders: Frei; Mears, Evans, Scott, Gonzalez; Roldan, Alonso, Rose, Pappa; Dempsey, Martins. Reserves: Perkins, Remick, Marshall, Azira, Kovar, Neagle, Barrett.

For Rapids: Irwin; Harrington, Burling, Watts, Burch; Cronin, Pittinari, Torres; Powers, Doyle, Solignac. On bench: MacMath, Eloundou, Moor, Ramirez, Riley, Sanchez, Badji.

Note from MLS: The MLS Disciplinary Committee has suspended Seattle Sounders FC assistant equipment manager Brett Johnson one game and fined him an undisclosed amount for violating the League’s policy on entering the field/leaving the bench area in the 64th minute of Seattle’s match against Sporting Kansas City on May 23, 2015.

Pregame: S2 opened the day with a 2-1 win over Timbers 2 in the U.S. Open Cup.

Next, Sounders FC goes for the sweep with a 7 p.m. MLS match with the Colorado Rapids at CenturyLink Field.

The game will be shown on JOEtv, heard on usual radio outlets, and blogged here, with additional updates and comments on Twitter @donruiztnt.