Seattle Sounders FC coach Sigi Schmid calls them “bogey teams.”
They are teams that just seem to have another team’s number — sometimes for reasons that don’t make sense in pure soccer terms.
Seattle, for example, is a bogey team for Sporting Kansas City, which is 1-1-6 against the Sounders, including a 1-0 loss in stoppage time Wednesday.
On the other hand, the San Jose Earthquakes have become something of a bogey team for the Sounders, and will take a four-game league winning streak over Seattle into their meeting Saturday at CenturyLink Field.
“You can’t really say why,” Schmid said after his team finished training Friday. “Maybe it’s something that sticks in your mind a little bit or whatever the case may be. But, obviously, we felt confident in Kansas City. It’s a place where we’ve gotten good results. And now it’s about turning things around with the Quakes because we haven’t gotten as good results with them recently — especially in league.”
San Jose leads the all-time Major League Soccer series against Seattle, 6-4-1. However, the Sounders went to the Bay Area and knocked the Quakes out of the 2012 U.S. Open Cup in the quarterfinal round.
The disparity could be more easily explained if San Jose played a style that made it a tougher matchup for the Sounders. But the way Schmid sees it, Sporting KC and the Quakes are very similar in their approach.
“San Jose is a busy, active team,” Schmid said. “They’re a team that can knock it around at midfield, and they have some guys who are very good passers. ... The field always ends up being a little stretched. There’s always a lot of duels and aerial duels in the game, and you’ve just got to be prepared for that. Kansas City is a little bit the same way, so I think we got a little preparation there.”
Sounders reserve goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann explained what he said from the bench Wednesday that resulted in his banishment from a straight red card.
“What did I say? I don’t exactly know, but something to the question ‘How is that not a handball?’ I might have added a couple of words in there,” Hahnemann said. “And maybe the fact that the whole stadium took a deep breath in — because everyone thought it was a penalty — the stadium went silent, and (the ref) heard maybe every word I said.”
Schmid said Hahnemann’s banishment “wasn’t a good thing,” largely because it left the club with no obvious emergency keeper had starter Michael Gspurning not been able to finish the game.
“One of the guys who (goalkeeper coach Tom Dutra) had mentioned was Patrick Ianni,” Schmid said. “I said, ‘He’s got the shortest arms on the team, so it’s not a good option: It would be like putting a T. rex in goal.’ We were looking at maybe Zach Scott. Brad Evans immediately volunteered once he heard that discussion. There were a few other guys we were thinking about — (Mauro) Rosales, but we thought he might have been a bit short.”
With Hahnemann ineligible for Saturday’s game and No. 3 keeper Josh Ford on the injured list, Seattle signed former Sounders U-23 goalkeeper Doug Herrick from MLS’ emergency pool.
Midfielder Lamar Neagle and defender DeAndre Yedlin are eligible again after sitting out Wednesday because of red-card suspensions. Schmid also indicated that injured players such as Obafemi Martins, Shalrie Joseph and Steve Zakuani could be available Saturday. However, he added that some players who stepped up during the club’s ongoing four-game unbeaten streak haven’t done anything to lose their spots. ... Tickets remain available for the Sounders’ MLS Reserve League match against Orlando City SC at 4 p.m. Sunday at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma. In honor of Mother’s Day, the team has announced that mothers accompanied by their children will be admitted free.