Sounders Insider

Seattle pitch controversy grows on eve of qualifier

Vancouver goalkeeper Brad Knighton called the field "ridiculously terrible," and wondered if it was to blame for a Whitecaps injury. The victorious Sounders weren't as down on the pitch.

Today, national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann and team captain Clint Dempsey generally played down any problem with the pitch.

However, just before evening training, midfielder Michael Bradley expressed a harsher assessment of the surface, which last week was laid over the existing permanent FieldTuft pitch the Sounders typically play on.

"It’s far from ideal," Bradley said. "I think when you talk about playing home games for World Cup qualifying – especially for us – you’d like to be playing on a field where it’s cut real short and you’re able to get some water on the field before the game, and that creates a fast, wet surface that really in conducive to how we want to play. But there’s a lot of things that goes into these decisions. Seattle certainly deserves a game. But I think the field unfortunately leaves a lot to be desired."While Bradley was displeased with the pitch, he was complimentary to Seattle as a soccer city. "Anybody now who pays attention to MLS sees what a special thing they have going here in Seattle," he said. "Whether you’ve been to a game here, whether you’ve just watched the highlights on the MLS website, you see right away how passionate the people here are, how much their team means to them. And so when we hope when we step on the field tomorrow that they can support us the same way."