Sounders Insider

Saturday comes: Sounders at Vancouver

VancouverThe Sounders are in Vancouver to meet the Whitecaps in a game important to the Cascadia Cup as well as the MLS Western Conference standings.

Here is our preview story, and below some basics on the match:

SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC (8-3-1; 25 POINTS)AT VANCOUVER WHITECAPS (4-2-4; 16 POINTS)4 p.m., BC Place, Vancouver, British Columbia.TV: JOEtv. RADIO: 97.3 FM.HEAD TO HEAD: Seattle leads 3-2-3 in MLS play, and 63-48-21 through all leagues and competitions dating back to the North American Soccer League in 1974. The clubs will meet again July 5 in Vancouver and Oct. 10 in Seattle. NOTES: This is the first Cascadia Cup competition of 2014 for the defending champion Whitecaps. The Sounders began Cascadia Cup play last month with a draw at Portland. … Seattle has the best record in MLS. The Whitecaps rank fourth in the Western Conference. Vancouver has won its last two matches and is unbeaten (2-0-2) over its last four. … The Sounders lead the league in goals, shots and shots on target. They also have been fouled more than any other team. … Seattle’s Obafemi Martins leads MLS with six assists and ranks in the top 10 with five goals. … Pedro Morales and Kekuta Manneh lead Vancouver with three goals each. … Seattle will be without goals leader Clint Dempsey and right back DeAndre Yedlin due to national team duty. Brad Evans returned from national-team camp in time to train with the Sounders on Friday, but his status for this match was undetermined. Two Whitecaps are away on international duty: Steven Beitashour (Iran) and Bryce Alderson (Canada). … The availability of Seattle midfielder Lamar Neagle (hamstring) is questionable. … The Whitecaps are 3-1-1 at home, while the Sounders are 3-1-1 on the road. … The referee is Ismail Elfath.QUOTABLE: “It’s going to be a game that’s a little bit open because (the Whitecaps) like to counterattack and they like to get forward. If they do get forward on us in a counterattacking situation, we’re a team that’s also not afraid to counterattack and go the other way; so it might open up at times in the game.” – Sounders coach Sigi SchmidNEXT: Real Salt Lake visits CenturyLink Field at 1 p.m. May 31.