2005 Jul 20

Seattle Sounders  0 - 1  Sunderland AFC Black Cats
Qwest Field, Seattle, WA

Seattle: Preston Burpo (James Ward 46'); Taylor Graham (Gabe Sturm 76'), Zach Scott (Scott Jenkins 46'), Ryan Edwards (Josh Hansen 76'), Billy Sleeth (Jake Besagno 60'); Kevin Sakuda (Ben Somoza 46'), Leighton O'Brien (Chad Brown 65'), CJ Klaas, Andrew Gregor (Jake Sagare 65'); Roger Levesque (Brett Wiesner 57'), Welton (Brent Whitfield 46').

Sunderland: Kelvin Davis; Stephen Wright (Ben Christensen 61'), Dan Smith (Martin Woods 46'), Neill Collins, Steve Caldwell (Myron Nosworthy 46'); Carl Robinson, Dean Whitehead, Julio Arca; Daryl Murphy (Andy Welsh 61'), Chris Brown (Jon Stead 46'), Steven Elliott (Liam Lawrence 61'). Substitute not used: Ben Alnwick.

81' SUN - Lawrence (Whitehead)

Additional match reports: Seattle P-I, Seattle Times, Sounders.

Match report by Ron Stickney:

In a friendly match, the visiting Sunderland AFC Black Cats defeated the Seattle Sounders 1-0 with a late goal by Liam Lawrence. The match drew a crowd of 8,502 to Qwest Field. Sunderland were recently promoted to the English Premier League, which kicks off the new season next month.

First Half

The Sounders had nearly all of their good chances in the first 20 minutes, and they would regret not finishing one or two of them. In the 5th minute, Kevin Sakuda found his path to the goal open and he shook the woodwork with a 15-yard blast that hit the outside of the near post. A minute later CJ Klaas' long cross to the left side was fired on goal by Andrew Gregor from 20 yards and goalkeeper Kelvin Davis leaped sideways for a one-handed parry. In the 12th a Seattle attack put the ball in front of Leighton O'Brien on a run at goal, and his 15-yard shot at the near post was saved by Davis with a dive. In the 15th Davis took a poor goal kick, serving the ball right to Roger Levesque, who held it and then centered it for O'Brien in the arc, who forced a save with a low corner shot. The last of the early chances was taken by Sakuda, whose shot from near the left flag was caught at the near post by Davis and carried over the line for a corner.

Sunderland had only half-chances in the first half. In the 30th minute from a broken corner kick play, Chris Brown chipped a shot over his head with his back to goal, but the shot went two yards over the bar. A cross from Dean Whitehead to Steven Elliott allowed a header shot, but Billy Sleeth was there to pressure the shot well wide.

In the final minute for Seattle, Gregor's free kick from the right touch line found Taylor Graham's head, but the shot flashed just wide of the far post.

Halftime: Seattle 0-0 Sunderland

The second half opened with the announcement of 7 substitutions, and there would be 9 more during the half as everyone got to play except Sunderland's backup goalkeeper.

Sunderland had chances soon after intermission. Elliott worked the ball to the arc for a shot, but sent it up the middle right to substitute goalkeeper James Ward. In the 57th a Sunderland corner kick was headed at the far post by Neill Collins, where Sleeth leaped up to head it away. In the 72nd a Sunderland corner kick was misplayed by Ward, the ball going off his hands to get headed on goal by Nyron Nosworthy, and defender Scott Jenkins at the bar headed it away. In the 76th a low shot from the arc was nicely saved by Ward.

Seattle's substitutes finally created a good chance at 77' as Ben Somoza's cross through the goal area was just out of reach of Brett Wiesner's feet-first slide, and Brent Whitfield's shot from clost to goal but at a sharp angle missed the far post by a yard.

81' Lawrence (Whitehead). The goal came when Sunderland worked the ball from the right side to the left as Seattle's defense looked in disarray. Whitehead sent the ball to the left side to an open Lawrence as the last defender stabbed at the pass and missed it. Lawrence set up his shot and fired a blast from 15 yards to the far side. Ward's hand deflected it slightly onto the underside of the crossbar and the ball bounced down near the goal line at the far post and jumped back out. Assistant referee Jeff Hosking raised his flag to indicate that the ball had crossed the line, then sprinted up the line. The local fans complained, but the call was probably correct.

Seattle had two chances to level the match. In the 88th, Jake Sagare's blast at goal from a cleared throw-in play hit the arm of a Sunderland defender in the middle of the penalty area and had the fans calling for a PK, but referee Yader Reyes did not award one. In added time, Klaas took a left-footed 30-yard shot that just barely missed the top right corner.

Final: Seattle 0-1 Sunderland

          Seattle  Sunderland
Shots:      14        12
Saves:       4         5
Corners:     5        13
Fouls:      16        22
Offsides:    2         0

6' SEA - O'Brien cautioned
53' SUN - Wright cautioned

Referees: Yader Reyes; Jeff Hosking, Josh Wilkens; Mark Matthews

Attendance: 8,502