Sounders Insider

Sigi stands by his criticism, and GM stands by Sigi

After practice today, Sounders coach Sigi Schmid stuck by his criticism of referee Tim Weyland's performance in the Sounders' 1-1 draw with Los Angeles.

And he got backing from general manager Adrian Hanauer, who expanded the topic beyond a single game or a referee into a problem of leaguewide importance.

"My bigger concern is that we are working hard here in Seattle and a lot of other teams around the country are working hard to get fans in the building and we owe a good experience to our fans," Hanauer said. "And that means referees that maintain control of the game, referees that keep the flow of the game going, referees that don't become the center of attention, referees that keep the players on the field – because quite frankly the fans are there to see the players, not the referees."

I'm going to write more about that in the Tuesday paper.

After yesterday's game, Schmid had suggested Weyland had been "confused and dazed" and mentioning that he and Weyland had a history dating to Schmid's days coaching UCLA, when he specifically requested that Weyland not work his team's games.

Schmid said he has been fined by the league for criticism of officials before, but isn't certain that will happen this time.

"I can't ever speak for the league," he said. "… Hopefully it'll be something that will be looked at. It doesn't change what happened. And I do feel that the situation of the, whatever you want to call it, the melee, the fracas, the altercation that occurred, I just think that could've been managed better. I think it could've and should've been managed much better."

A couple of other notes:

Schmid would not say who will take James Riley's place in the starting lineup Saturday at Dallas. For that matter, he would not even commit to Fredy Montero returning to the starting lineup now that he's free of his red-card suspension.

The Sounders reserves played to a 1-1 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps PDL team Monday at Starfire. Kevin Forrest got Seattle's lone goal.

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