2008 Jul 1

US Open Cup, Round 3:
Seattle Sounders  2 - 0  Chivas USA
Starfire Sports Stadium, Tukwila, WA

Seattle: Chris Eylander; Taylor Graham, Zach Scott, Kevin Sakuda, Michael Rodríguez; Kenji Treschuk, Leighton O'Brien (Nik Besagno 81'), Josh Gardner (Danny Jackson 62'), Hugo Alcaraz-Cuellar; Andre Schmid (Noah Merl 70'), Sébastien Le Toux (Youssouf Kante 90'). Substitutes not used: Ben Dragavon, Craig Tomlinson, Jason Cascio.

Chivas: Brad Guzan; Jon Bornstein, Jim Curtin, Shavar Thomas, Dan Paladini; Paulo Nagamura, Jorge Flores (Anthony Hamilton 73'), Sacha Kljestan (Keith Savage 83'), Kraig Chiles (Jesse Marsch 65'); Justin Braun (Francisco Mendoza 60'), Atiba Harris. Substitutes not used: Dan Kennedy, Claudio Suarez, Carey Talley.

43' SEA: Graham (Gardner)
80' SEA: Le Toux

Additional match reports: Sounders, Chivas USA, GOALSeattle.com, Seattle P-I, Seattle Times, Prost Amerika, USA Today (AP), Soccer America.

Match report from Ron Stickney:

For the second year in a row, the Seattle Sounders defeated MLS side Chivas USA in third round US Open Cup action. Last year it was 3-1, this year it was 2-0. Taylor Graham scored late in the first half and Sébastien Le Toux added an insurance goal late in the second half. Chris Eylander needed some fine saves to earn the shutout, his third straight in this year's Open Cup. All of Seattle's defenders played well to contribute to the shutout.

Chivas shot first, 4 minutes in, with Kraig Chiles sending a low shot to Eylander for an easy save. Although not a regular for Chivas, Chiles was maybe the best attacker for his side in this match. In the 9th, Chiles sent a dangerous cross in the air for the far-post runner, but Eylander reached it first.

Josh Gardner took Seattle's first good shot, a quick try for the lower near corner from 30 yards, and missed the post by inches. The 18th saw the first corner kick of the match, taken by Gardner for Seattle. Goalkeeper Brad Guzan missed the ball completely and it ended up loose near the far post. Seattle defender Zach Scott would have been first to it, except that Shavar Thomas pulled him over backwards in the goal area, and Scott as well as the nearby fans could not believe that referee Yader Reyes did not award a penalty kick. Reyes seemed like a 12th player for Chivas, as he continued to tolerate nastiness from the visitors. A dangerous, unnecessary challenge on Gardner at the touch line was ignored by Reyes, and when Kenji Treschuk was painfully chopped down in the circle from behind by Paulo Nagamura at 22' the expected yellow card stayed in Reyes' pocket. The Sounders would have to win this one in spite of the referee.

Chivas had just one more decent shot in the first half at 24 minutes, a 20-yarder up the middle by Justin Braun that missed by 2 yards.

More nastiness was ignored by Reyes at 40' when Andre Schmid was grabbed in the head to keep him from playing the ball in the air.

43' SEA: Graham (Gardner). Seattle got the break they were looking for when Treschuk stole the ball at the halfway line and put a through ball in front of Le Toux, whose marker was caught leaning the wrong way. Le Toux stepped around the marker and was 2 steps clear when he entered the penalty area with only Guzan to beat. Le Toux's low shot wasn't good enough, and Guzan collapsed to send it wide with a leg save. Gardner took the corner kick from the right side and it came to the near side, hard and head high and hooking sharply. Graham started out from the far post and broke away from his handlers to run onto the ball 8 yards out, redirecting it on goal with enough pace that it was past Guzan's near shoulder before he could get his hands up. 1-0 Seattle.

Chivas steadily built up momentum after the break and a goal seemed inevitable, but it never materialized. Seattle left back Scott was beat on a through ball for Chiles early in the half, but recovered just enough to put it out for a corner. Atiba Harris timed his leap at the spot better than Michael Rodríguez did and headed nicely on goal, but Eylander dove right and held on to it. Chiles tried to chip from 30 yards on 55 minutes but sent it way high.

At the other end O'Brien tried a quick shot from 20 yards but sent it well wide.

At 57' a Chivas corner kick went to the far side for a wide open Chiles, and he could not believe that he sent his blast right into Eylander's bread basket.

Chivas defender Jon Bornstein was shaken up a bit when he collided with Guzan as the both went after a dangerous cross out near the 18-yard line.

At 61' Chivas had a good chance when Harris got the ball near goal on the left, but he chose to shoot from the steep angle rather than send it in front of goal and the shot went a half yard over the bar. At 67' a cross bounced through traffic for an open Jorge Flores but he wasted the shot high.

By 70' Seattle had brought on defenders Danny Jackson and Noah Merl, and it looked like a 6-3-1 lineup. Paradoxically, it was then that Seattle started getting some scoring chances. From a long free kick at 74', Scott's header from the left side bounced past Guzan and almost found the far post. Four minutes later Jackson's 15-yard header from O'Brien's corner kick flashed just wide of the top right corner.

Chivas came close in the 79th with a free kick play from just to the right of the arc. The ball was rolled a yard to the side for a shot by Sacha Kljestan. The low shot glanced off the right end of the wall making it tricky for Eylander, but he dove forward and smothered the shot. Then he got up and turned the tide dramatically with his punt.

80' SEA: Le Toux. Eylander's punt that is mentioned in the preceding paragraph went to the far end, where a defender tried to head it to Guzan. Le Toux got to the bouncer first and chipped a perfect shot that looped softly over Guzan and bounced in before he could recover. 2-0 Seattle.

The next 10 minutes saw Chivas shots from Harris and substitute Keith Savage, but neither shot had enough pace to get by Eylander. Substitute Anthony Hamilton had a more worthy effort from 12 yards in added time, forcing a diving save by Eylander.

In the few minutes of added time Le Toux, currently the US Open Cup leader in goals with 5, just missed a couple of chances to score more. He was wide open on the left with Guzan charging out, but that shot hit the crossbar squarely. Then Le Toux got around a defender for another try with only Guzan to beat, and the shot missed the lower far corner by inches.

Seattle will host the Kansas City Wizards in the semifinal on July 8 at 7:00 PM at Qwest Field. Tickets go on sale at 10:00 AM on July 2, $17 in advance, $20 on match day.

          Seattle    Chivas
Shots:       10        12
Saves:        7         3
Corners:      4         4
Fouls:       12        16
Offsides:     3         1

64' SEA: Schmid cautioned
69' CHV: Kljestan cautioned
81' SEA: O'Brien cautioned

Referees: Yader Reyes; Jeff Hosking, Josh Wilkins; Will Niccolls

Attendance: 2,997