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September 17, 2011 at 9:25 PM

Schmid: “The league’s got to start protecting (Rosales).”

UPDATE 9:25 p.m. — Sounders confirm that Mauro Rosales sprained the MCL in his right knee tonight. No word whether it’s mild or moderate yet. He’ll get an MRI on Monday to determine the extent.

It was another banner night for Sounders FC midfielder Mauro Rosales, but it was also another night of being knocked around all over the field. Rosales suffered a right knee injury late in the game on an unnecessary hit and coach Sigi Schmid wasn’t happy.

“The league’s got to start protecting him,” Schmid said. “The last two games teams have gone out there and kicked him, and I don’t think the referees have done a good job protecting him. Today was a case in point. We’re up on top of the game 3-0 and he’s got the ball at his feet and it’s a tackle that’s just meant to get a little kick in. And who knows how long he’s out now? We have a talented player in this league, a player who’s a good player, who fans want to come and watch play, then we let thugs hit him and we don’t protect him enough. I think that’s something that’s got to happen with the referees. I’m very disappointed with the last two games. The last game before this one, the first three times he touched the ball he got fouled and nothing got called. Today early on he got dumped and quite a few times he’s not getting calls. I’d like to see the referee Kevin Stott stand there and let Brandon McDonald run into his back and see if he could stay on his feet. I’m very disappointed in that.”

Is there an injury concern?

“We’ll have to see the extent of the injury and how long he’s out,” Schmid said, “but he’s definitely not going to be playing Tuesday because of it.”

Where does protecting players have to start?

“It’s just consistent refereeing,” Schmid said. “I think referees have to look at it. I do things right. I do things wrong. I have to accept the things I do wrong. I have to man up. I have to say, ‘Hey, I did that wrong and I got to get better at it.’ It’s the same thing with our referees. I think they’ve got to look at it and say, ‘You know what? I missed that call. That was wrong and I got to make sure I do it better.’ I think sometimes what gets done is the call gets defended as to why a bad call was maybe a correct call. Let’s just call a spade a spade and say, ‘Hey, it was the wrong call,’ and leave it like that.”

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