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June 7, 2011 at 12:15 PM

Sounders FC vs. Chicago Fire, player ratings

fucito chi.jpgPhoto credit: David Banks, Getty Images

Not a very entertaining game. I actually fell asleep while reviewing the tape, but that might have been partially due to the time of day. In the end, a point on the road is never a disastrous result. Coupled with the win in Salt Lake, four points on a two-game road trip is nothing to scoff at.

Still, the performance was a little underwhelming. Chicago came out the aggressors and had the advantage in shots. There wasn’t much creativity in the offensive third from Seattle, and outside of Lamar Neagle’s early chances, there wasn’t much of note.

Three of the next four at are home, so it’s still a good time to make a run. Let’s get to it.

* * *

STARTERS

GK Kasey Keller — Did well to earn his fourth shutout. A diving save on Paladini in the 27th minute was one of the highlights of the game. Was comfortable on his other saves and handled crosses well. Might’ve had an assist if not for an errant whistle. Also clattered into Oduro to preserve the result in the end. 7

D James Riley — Very solid night. Minus a clever nutmeg, Corben Bone was an afterthought for much of the match. Also did well offensively, whether it was distribution or making runs forward. 6.5

D Jeff Parke — Extremely active and came up big often. Strong in the air, but also had a number of crucial tackles. Strong in possession, as always, from the back. On the other side, didn’t close down shooters well enough at times when the forwards drifted back to the top of the box. 7

D Jhon Kennedy Hurtado — Got the better of Nazarit for most of the night. Most of that had to be through the air due to a direct approach from the Fire. Perhaps not as busy as his center back partner, but had very few negative notes. 7

D Tyson Wahl — Had issues with the speedy Oduro on his side, and Chicago’s best chances might have come on his side. Had some shaky clearances. Service was solid on set pieces, and he even had a go on goal at one point. 5.5

M Osvaldo Alonso — Accidentally lost this one in the cut-and-paste. Was arguably the strongest field player on the night. Was good in possession, and continues to get stronger ever week in possession, but still had a couple turnovers that led to danger. Another quality showing. 7

M Brad Evans — Wasn’t as strong with the ball as we’re used to. Spilled possession out of bounds a couple times. Was strong defensively and in the air. Spacing was good, as he went wide and tucked in when he needed to. Won a lot of second balls in midfield, but still didn’t have the normal impact he’s had this year. 5

M Lamar Neagle — Had a couple great moments early, but that 6th-minute header needs to go in. Provided an offensive spark throughout the game and created a lot of danger. Strong in possession, but crosses were somewhat inconsistent. Still a strong performance in the end, especially for a first career MLS start. 6.5

M Mauro Rosales (off 66) — Active and involved, even after a crunching tackle from Segares took him out. Tracked back well at times and made good runs. Found space on the wings to create danger. Should’ve had an assist on that early cross to Neagle. Set piece service was OK. Limited turnovers. 6

F Mike Fucito (off 81) — Arlo uses the word “nuisance” on the broadcast, and that’s the best way to put it. Will win possession deep in the attacking third a number of times off effort alone. Didn’t have a lot of moments of danger, whether on goal himself or as a playmaker. 5.5

F Nate Jaqua (off 53) — Was a presence on long balls, whether it was winning headers or drawing fouls. Had an early shot on Johnson, but didn’t see a lot of chances on goal. Set up Rosales with a good header at one point, but could’ve been more involved. 5

SUBSTITUTES

F Fredy Montero (on 53) — Might’ve had a goal on a breakaway, but we’ll never know due to Vaughn’s errant whistle. Effort was good in tracking back. Hold-up play was good. Missed just wide on a free kick chance. Has to start on Saturday, you’d think. 6

F/M Roger Levesque (on 66) — Put his miles in, like he always does. Ran from endline to endline. Had a couple decent crosses. 5

M Servando Carrasco (on 81) — Came on late. Had a couple moments of good possession and a shot attempt. Also had some interesting moments knocking the ball toward his own goal. INC

REFEREE TERRY VAUGHN

Calling a foul on Montero was ridiculous. That’s a game-changing call, and an erroneous one. Also should’ve carded Segares for taking out Rosales. Played advantage at odd times. Mostly fine, but had some head-shaking moments. 4

COACH SIGI SCHMID

I would’ve started Montero, but surely had the longer goal in mind in that decision. As a result, the offense was lacking of something special. Starting Neagle was positive and defensively the team was solid. Like I mentioned at the beginning, a point on the road (and four points in two) isn’t bad at all. 5.5

BONUS RATINGS

I wasn’t able to get to FC Dallas ratings in a timely fashion, but here are those marks:

GK Kasey Keller — Not much to do. 5.5

D Zach Scott — Strong on Shea all night. 6

D Jhon Kennedy Hurtado — Very steady and reliable. 6.5

D Jeff Parke — Had a couple shaky moments. 5.5

D Leo Gonzalez — A strong return to action. 6

M Osvaldo Alonso — Buzzed all over the field, as always. 7.5

M Erik Friberg — Active and involved. 6

M Alvaro Fernandez (off 64) — Disappeared in second half. 5

M Mauro Rosales (off 83) — Too many giveaways. 5.5

F Mike Fucito — How did he not get a goal? 7

F Fredy Montero (off 75) — Drew Sigi’s ire afterward. 4

M Roger Levesque (on 64) — Versatile and active. 5

F Nate Jaqua (on 75) — Strong cameo. 5.5

M Lamar Neagle (on 83) — Created danger in short spell. INC

Ref Baldomero Toledo — Home side wanted some PK calls, got a little physical, but it wasn’t egregious. 5

Coach Sigi Schmid — Team deserved much more, but a home loss stung. 5

* * *

What do you think?

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