2013 Feb 16

Sounders earn Desert Diamond Cup final with a win over Salt Lake

Preseason, Desert Diamond Cup:
Seattle Sounders FC  2 - 1  Real Salt Lake
Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium, Tucson, AZ

Goals:
66' SEA: Mario Martinez
69' SEA: Phillip Lund

86' SL: Jordan Sterzer

Seattle: Michael Gspurning (Josh Ford 60'); Adam Johansson (DeAndre Yedlin 38'), Zach Scott (Eriq Zavaleta 71'), Jhon Kennedy Hurtado (Ashani Fairclough 46'), Leo Gonzalez (Dylan Remick 46'); Mauro Rosales (Mario Martinez 46'), Osvaldo Alonso (Servando Carrasco 71'), Brad Evans (Andy Rose 46'), Steve Zakuani (Alex Caskey 46'); David Estrada (Philip Lund 46', Babayele Sodade 71'), Eddie Johnson (Sammy Ochoa 46').

Salt Lake: Nick Rimando (Eduardo Fernandez 73'); Tony Beltran (Lovel Palmer 73'), Chris Schuler (Aaron Maund 73'), Kwame Watson-Siriboe (Carlos Salcedo 73'), Chris Mansally (Nickardo Blake 73'); Kyle Beckerman (Enzo Martinez 73'), Jordany Alvarez (Khari Stephenson 46'), Sebastian Velasquez (Cole Grossman 73'), Ned Grabavoy (Jordan Sterzer 73'); Alvaro Saborio (Devon Sandoval 73'), Joao Plata (David Viana 58').


Match report from Sounders FC:

Mario Martinez and Philip Lund each scored as Sounders FC (2-0-0, 6 points) defeated Real Salt Lake (0-1-1, 1 point), 2-1, in the second match of the Desert Diamond Cup. John Sterzer scored the lone goal for Real Salt Lake as Sounders FC clinched a berth in the tournament's final next Saturday. Kickoff is at 5 p.m. PT on NBC Sports Network.

In the 66th minute, Martinez intercepted a clearance at the top of the box, touched once, and rocketed a left-footed shot off a bounce into the bottom right corner of the net. Martinez was the last Sounders FC player to score against RSL when he netted the winner in the MLS Western Conference semifinals last season.

Minutes later, Lund picked up the rebound off an Osvaldo Alonso shot and pushed it into the back of the net to make it 2-0.

Sounders FC kept the shutout until the 88th minute when RSL's Jordan Sterzer got to a deflected shot and put it into the open net for a goal.

The win marked the second straight for Sounders FC in the Desert Diamond Cup after taking down the New England Revoution, 2-0, on Wednesday.

The three goals scored were more than the two teams scored against each other in five games (including playoffs) in 2012.

Despite not scoring, Seattle pressed the net in the first half. In the 21st minute, a Mauro Rosales free kick was snatched by RSL keeper Nick Rimando amidst a dangerous crowd in the box. In the 40th, DeAndre Yedlin made a run up the right side and found David Estrada in the box, but the striker's shot rolled wide of the far post.

The four-game tournament continues on Wednesday when Sounders FC takes on the New York Red Bulls and concludes next Saturday with the championship and third place games. Seattle will also play Mexican side Veracruz on Friday to prepare for their CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal matchup with Tigres.


Statistics:
          SEA    SL
Shots:      5    14
Saves:      3     1
Corners:    3     5
Fouls:      7    11
Offside:    4     1

Misconduct:
20' SL: Chris Schuler cautioned
34' SL: Kenny Mansally cautioned

Referee: Allen Chapman


Postmatch Quotes

Seattle Sounders FC

Sigi Schmid - Coach

On what he got out of the game: It was just another opportunity to play our ?rst team or ?rst group for 45 minutes and it gave us a good look at the second group as well. They came in and did really well. Mario Martinez joined us yesterday, he just got in yesterday so we sort of held him until the second half and he scored a great goal. What can you say?

On what he told his players: Well, if you play and try not to get injured, you're going to get injured and if you go half-ass into the tackles, when you say it that way, you can't quote that, if you go half-hearted into the tackles you know, then things ... you have to play normal, you know, but you don't want to go late. You don't want to slide tackle people from behind, things like that. So, we picked up an injury again today on that tackle, we picked up an injury in the last game but for the most part, you've just got to play the game like normal.

On his plans for the Veracruz match: For us, it's an opportunity to play against a team that plays a lot of style or Mexican style of play which is different than what we normally see in MLS so, for us it's good preparation, you know, to play against a team that plays like that because a lot of times those teams play a little more in a 3-5-2, you know they push up. The way they defend, as a group, is a little bit different than MLS and it gives us preparation in that regard and preparation for teams.

On lack of preseason matches early: I don't like to scrimmage early. I like us to get our ?tness work. A lot of coaches like to put scrimmage games in even after two, three days of practice and I've always been a coach who did the same thing in college where the periods of time were even shorter. We did one week of training in Seattle where we just met once a day, got everybody into rhythm again and we did a hard ?tness week at Casa Grande and we ?nished that off with a game against Portland down here and this phase now is about games. We're trying to divide it out into phases so we're not pushing the guys physically when they're really tired and then force them into a game because in a game, your instincts take over and you do something that maybe your body's not ready for and you pick up an injury that you don't even think of.

On his reaction to the announcement from Robby Rogers: I mean, I love Robby. Robby's a great kid. I've known Robby since he was nine years old. He and my youngest son were friends, they played together on the same youth teams from the age of nine to sixteen so I've known Robby, I've known his folks, I've known his family for a long time and you know, I'm very proud of the step that he took. I hope he didn't feel he had to step away from the game to do that because I think the game can accept that. I'm just happy for him and I want to see Robby be successful. I was his coach, but I'm also a friend and he had some great years for me at Columbus. I wish him nothing but the best. It was a courageous step.

Phillip Lund

On scoring goal: Always nice to score a goal, especially I have not been playing a match in seven eight months now so it was good to have some play time and then you score a goal that makes it nice.

On the celebratory dance: Ezra told me he thought I would score today and if I scored I promised him I would dance.

On if the dance was a particular dance: No, no it just came to me.

On experience in camp: I have been sick a few days before so in the beginning it was very hard for me, I was very low on energy, so in the beginning it was very tough for me but hopefully I can get around it.

On differences between camps in the US and Denmark: We didn't do it for so many days, we only stayed for a few days. We would play 1 or 2 matches in 2 to 4 days and then go back and train so we didn't stay two weeks.

On how it feels to have a longer stay than usual: Yea of course because then you can know the other guys a little bit more outside the pitch and on the pitch.

On enjoying Arizona: Of course I am; we came from Seattle where it's almost raining everyday so here it's a little bit sunny so thatís good.

On Danish summer: Well I would say the Danish summer is better, right (laughter). But yea, it's pretty good weather here.

Brad Evans

On his general thoughts of the match: I think the ?rst 25 minutes, not much ?ow to the game because of all the fouls and everything. For whatever reason, the past two games that we've got into have been physical. I don't know why but you deal with it and kind of move on, but I think that they played their typical game and that's ... in the mid?eld and play a tight diamond in the mid?eld, connect their passes, play it out wide. Not too many quality chances from them. I think we created a little bit more chances, you know, catching them on the counter.

Real Salt Lake

Jason Kreis - Coach

On general impression of game: I think it was typical, I thought that it was a little bit of fatigue performance on our part; we've been working our guys extremely hard, the training session yesterday was like a normal training session ... so we're asking a lot from our players tonight and it was exhaustion and fatigue ... that led to chances of goals against us but that's OK because now we can talk about what we can fix to not allow goals on us.