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Sounders FC

Daily coverage of Seattle Sounders FC, MLS and world soccer.

July 27, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Sounders FC coach Sigi Schmid quotes from Tuesday

(On scouting Metapan) “Obviously we have been doing our research and we’ve found out a lot of things about them. They are a team that has been successful probably over the last four seasons in their league. It’s the same coach that coached against me in 2007 when we played them in Columbus at the end of the year – it might have been 2006, I’m not sure, one of those two years. He has been the same coach for the past six or seven years there. (Luis) Suarez’s brother, the Suarez from Uruguay, plays for the team. He (Paolo Suarez) is one of their key players. Odir Flores is another key player for them. (Mark) Blanco has got like 24 goals over the last season and a half for them. He is a dangerous, attacking player. So they are a team that we have an idea of their shape. We have an idea of their organization. We have seen a couple video-tapes of games that they have played. I have talked to some El Salvadorian people that I know who have given me some information. They played a game in L.A. on the weekend against the Hollywood Hitmen, a PDL team. So I talked to people that have seen that game. So we have a fairly good idea as to what they are about.”

(How’d they do against the Hitmen?) “They won 1-0, but they only played their first team for the first 45 minutes. They were leading 1-0 and put in a bunch of reserves in the second half.”

(On playing a non-MLS team) “Obviously when you play against a team it’s always for the players, they have a better idea of what is this player going to do. So you can mention to the players (Paolo) Suarez or (Odir) Flores or (Mark) Blanco, it’s a name and it’s a guy running around on film. It’s not necessarily somebody they have played against. When they get matched up they can sort of eyeball them and it makes it a little bit easier for the team. They are a team that works very hard; that has been the trademark of what everybody says. They are a team that battles for every loose ball and that fights for everything, for every square space on the field. They are a team that defends well, that’s how they sort of pushed forward and brought themselves into prominence in the El Salvadorian league. And they are a team that’s been able to score timely goals. So it’s going to be an exciting game. It’s going to be a good game.”

(Do you think they’ll have more info on you than you have on them?) “It’s probably easier for (them). There’s a huge El Salvadorian community in the United States, so it’s probably easy for them to have gotten a number of DVDs on our games. He’s a good coach, so he’ll have done his research, but he probably has a few more games to look at than us.”

(On three Sounders FC players being named MLS All-Stars) “Obviously all of them are good players. (Fredy) Montero is our leading points guy at this time. I think he is on a seven or eight game streak right now in terms of goals and assists so he deserves it. Kasey (Keller) has played very well as of late for us and has come up with some good saves. As I’ve always said with Freddie (Ljungberg), Freddie is a good, talented player and worthy of being an all-star.”

(Were you surprised at the Ljungberg pick?) “People vote and selections are made, and he’s a quality player. So is it a surprise? Well because he hasn’t been playing for us in the last few weeks, maybe a surprise only from that. But the all-star voting was concluded a long time ago and he was playing a very significant role on our team at that point.”

(Any update on Ljungberg’s situation?) “No, still the same. Status quo. Adrian’s closer to that than I am, so I think they’re still looking at options at this point.”

(On approaching a two-leg playoff) “Away goals are more important. In the MLS playoffs away goals don’t matter. So if you’re at home and you play 1-1 then go on the road at play 3-3, you’re still out. Here if at home you play 2-2 and you go down there and play 1-1, you’re going to be out. Not giving up goals is important in that, whenever away goals count. And it also rewards you a little bit more for going after it when you’re on the road. So as a result of that, they’re going to try and get a counter, they’re going to try to sneak a goal somewhere along the lines, so we have to be aware of that and make sure we’re solid and we don’t get caught. But, yeah, it is the first 90 minutes of an 180-minute game, certainly.”

(On the rules of this competition) “Roster size, you can declare 18 for the game. It’s the normal substitutions, three substitutions. Two yellow cards and you have to miss a game, so it’s a little bit harder for the teams that have to play play-in games because that’s the rule for the group stage, but any cards in the play-in games carry over into group stage. That’s the only that’s a little bit different. Everything else is pretty much standard. The other big difference, every team in MLS probably plays a little bit differently, but the styles aren’t dramatically different. So here you get a team that’s going to play a pretty different style than what we see on a day-to-day basis in MLS.”

(On that style) “It’s going technical. They’re going to like to hit one-twos. Probably play a few more balls to feet. They’re not going to be afraid to knock a long ball in as well once in a while, but when you play on fields down there, the ball is heavier, the grass is thicker, so it becomes a slower game and more of a technical game.”

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