Sounders Insider

Hanauer explains why more of Qwest isn't open

The Sounders have generally outlined their position on this before. However, here is general manager Adrian Hanauer explaining at the beginning of this week why Qwest Field seating hasn't been expanded for Portland's visit on Saturday night:

"The decision happened over a long period of time," he said. "Our league had a policy where road supporters were allotted 100 seats. We talked as ownership – the three groups together – about what we wanted to do leading up to this. We wanted to be cognizant of the traveling supporters and certainly increase the number, but we also wanted to walk before we run. So we all agreed 500 is a good number to open up for the traveling supporters. Part of that is that we each want these games to be home games. We don’t want a bunch of traveling supporters. As soon as we open up the whole building, it’s a free for all. So obviously when we open our whole building up it’s a lot different than when Vancouver and Portland open up their whole buildings, because their buildings hold 18 and 20 thousand. We want home games, we want our fans, we want our energy, we want three points at home. So a big piece of it came to early planning and an agreement between the three clubs, and part of it is the competitive nature of things."

How many tickets might have been sold? Could you have reached 50,000? "I don’t (know). I’m sure we would have sold more. … My gut doesn’t tell me that there are tens of thousands of people who don’t feel like they can get a ticket to our games when they want. We just know from how many season tickets we’ve sold, when we sell out each game, how far in advance. This Portland game didn’t sell out immediately, so that tells me that maybe there aren’t tens of thousands of people out there pining that they weren’t able to get a ticket for this."