Seattle Sounders 2 - 0 Milwaukee Rampage
Renton Memorial Stadium, Renton, WA
23' SEA: Russell (Baena)
78' SEA: Lopez own goal
Seattle: Bill May; Kieran Barton, Jason Annicchero, Craig Waibel; Shan Gaw (Scott Jenkins 75), Sean Henderson, Oliver Heald, Viet Nguyen (Ralph Robertson 75), Alex Nouri (Randy Mann 79); Ian Russell, Mark Baena.
Milwaukee: Jason Burdge; Dino Lopez, Lovelace Ackah, Ricardo
Iribarren, Josh Timbers; Jon Szczepanski, Marcos Mello (Omar Dalombo 69),
Steve Provan (Ted Storm 69), Brian Haynes; David Marshall, Dan Stebbins.
A good work rate earned the Seattle Sounders a 2-0 win over the visiting Milwaukee Rampage, who were fighting for points to help them hang onto the 8th and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. Ian Russell scored halfway through the first half, but seven minutes later Milwaukee looked like they would level the score with a penalty kick. Jon Szczepanski aimed just inside the left post, but Bill May made it there to deny the goal. With ten minutes left, an own goal by sweeper Dino Lopez sealed Milwaukee's fate.
Ex-Sounder Brian Haynes, who has played in MLS since its beginning, played the full 90 for Milwaukee, on loan from the Dallas Burn. It seems that Haynes had been red-carded with the Burn and was serving an MLS suspension, so Milwaukee coach Cacho Cordoba, who used to be assistant coach for the Burn, pulled some strings to get Haynes for this match.
With the win, the Sounders have locked in home pitch advantage for the first round of the playoffs. The win puts pressure on the rest of the top four in the Western Conference. Front runner San Diego lost at Orange County this same evening, giving Seattle a slim chance at first in the conference. San Diego lead the race with 85 points and one match left. Seattle are second with 79 points and a pair left, home and away with Vancouver. Minnesota and Vancouver have 75 and 74 points, respectively, and each have three matches left.
2' SEA - Three early Seattle attacks all found Shan Gaw with the ball inside the penalty area, but no good chances materialized.
5' MIL - A Haynes free kick from the left touch line came down in front of goal but was taken by May.
6' SEA - Sean Henderson was wide left with a 30-yarder up the middle.
9' MIL - Dan Stebbins' header from a long cross past the far post was pressured wide.
10' SEA - Russell and goalkeeper Jason Burdge simultaneously got to a ball sent over the Milwaukee defense. Russell's touch on the ball was blocked away by Burdge and the ball fell to a Milwaukee midfielder.
13' MIL - Haynes' cross from the left corner was headed wide of the far post by David Marshall.
17' SEA - Oliver Heald's 30-yard free kick from the left forced the first save of the match.
20' SEA - Viet Nguyen's low cross from the right line was deflected just wide of the far post by Alex Nouri.
22' SEA - On a bending run, Mark Baena caught up to a fast-paced through ball to earn a shot inside the area with only Burdge to beat, but Burdge came out to force the shot wide right.
23' SEA - Russell (Baena). A Milwaukee goal kick was headed right back by Jason Annicchero, whose pass was to Baena on the offside line. Baena headed the ball into space ahead and to the left for Russell, who controlled and sent an accurate, medium-speed shot past Burdge and inside the far post. Burdge was caught leaning towards the near post. SEA 1 - 0 MIL.
25' SEA - Nouri headed a cross to the lower far corner from 18 yards, forcing a save by Burdge.
26' MIL - Kieran Barton cleared a long, low Milwaukee shot that otherwise may or may not have sneaked past a diving May.
30' MIL - Seattle defender Craig Waibel was called for handling the ball just inside the left corner of the penalty area, giving Milwaukee a penalty kick. Szczepanski aimed the spot kick just inside the left post, but May dove sideways and with one hand knocked the ball wide for a corner kick, making his first save of the match his best. May has stopped both penalty kicks he has faced this season.
35' SEA - Russell beat his man to a long ball down the right touch line and got off a pressured shot that went wide of the far post.
36' SEA - Russell was going to be first to a ball sent over the Milwaukee defense and into the left side of the penalty area, but he was knocked down by a hard charge. The general consensus amongst the fans was that Russell deserved a penalty kick, but referee Tim Weyland wouldn't give it. The crowd was quite vocal in their dissent. Seattle Coach Neil Megson joined in with the majority and said something to Weyland that got Megson dismissed from the pitch.
38' SEA - A broken attack turned into a good chance when the ball rolled to Sean Henderson for a pair of hard shots from 18 yards. The first was blocked by Burdge but went right back to Henderson, then Burdge held on to the putback shot.
42' SEA - From Gaw's drop pass, Henderson fired a 15-yarder at the top left corner, but Burdge parried the shot, then collected the remains.
44' MIL - From a busted corner kick play, Stebbins' weak shot was easily saved by May.
45' MIL - Waibel was cautioned for a late foul on Szczepanski just outside the penalty area. Haynes' free kick from the right side curled over the wall and tried to dive under the crossbar, but May leaped to push the ball over with one hand.
Halftime: Seattle 1 - 0 Milwaukee
46' MIL - From the kickoff play, David Marshall put a shot from the right line at the top near corner, but May was there to grab it.
51' SEA - Annicchero was cuationed for pulling down Stebbins.
62' MIL - Stebbins was shown the yellow card, perhaps for something he said.
64' SEA - Russell tried a quick 30-yard shot but was not close.
67' MIL - Haynes headed a throw-in weakly on goal and May easily saved.
67' SEA - Carrying the ball up the middle, Russell drew a defender and then passed right for Baena. The shot by Baena was deflected by Burdge onto the near post, then Ricardo Iribarren cleared the ball from danger.
69' MIL - Ted Storm and Omar Dalombo came on for Steve Provan and Marcos Mello.
71' MIL - Iribarren was cautioned for knocking Russell down from behind.
72' SEA - Russell fed a low cross through a crowd in the area and to Nouri, whose 15-yard shot up the middle was saved by Burdge at the lower left corner.
73' MIL - Marshall was cautioned for grabbing a handful of jersey.
75' SEA - Ralph Robertson and Scott Jenkins came on for Nguyen and Gaw.
79' SEA - Randy Mann entered for Nouri.
80' SEA - Own goal. Milwaukee sweeper Lopez thought he was heading the ball back softly for Burdge, but the keeper had moved to the right of goal. Nobody could get back in time as they all watched the ball bounce slowly into the net. SEA 2 - 0 MIL.
86' SEA - Baena earned a break up the left line and tried to shoot past the onrushing Burdge. The shot went wide of the near post.
87' MIL - Dalombo volleyed a cross from the right and was just wide of the top far corner from 18 yards.
88' SEA - Henderson bent a 20-yarder just over the bar.
Final: Seattle 2 - 0 Milwaukee
Shots: SEA 19, MIL 12
Saves: May 5, Burdge 7
Corners: SEA 9, MIL 6
Fouls: SEA 13, MIL 12
Offside: SEA 2, MIL 1
36' Coach Megson (SEA) dismissed from the pitch
45' Waibel (SEA) cautioned
51' Annicchero (SEA) cautioned
62' Stebbins (MIL) cautioned
71' Iribarren (MIL) cautioned
73' Marshall (MIL) cautioned
Referee: Tim Weyland; Asst. Refs: Cory Dean, Michael Fox; 4th Official: Mohammad Zarrabi-Kashani.