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March 2, 2012 at 12:18 PM

GM Hanauer discusses GKs, Rosales as a DP, Cascadia plans, CCL and more

Sounders FC general manager Adrian Hanauer spoke to reporters after Friday’s practice and the interview covered a variety of subjects. Here’s the transcript:

* * *

(So with Andrew Weber’s signing you’ll have four goalkeepers under contract?) “Yes.”

(That’s a fairly unique situation in MLS…) “Well, with Josh’s injury situation right now, we felt we needed to certainly have three available during trainings, and we like all four of them. It’s going to provide a great deal of competition. Optimally, we probably would’ve ended up with three, but Josh’s injury sort of forced our hand a little bit.”

(Have you made a final decision on O’Brian White? Ed note: More on those possibilities here.) “We are getting close to a final decision, talking with O’Brian. We will make an announcement in the not-too-distant future.”

(Can we start calling Mauro Rosales a designated player?) “Yes.”

(On why the CCL is so important…) “One of the goals we set out with early in the club’s existence was to play, compete, succeed internationally, and this is our one chance in true competition. The way we see it is we’re six games away from playing in the world club championships. We certainly have three very, very difficult opponents in front of that, but this is our chance for our club and for Major League Soccer in general to get an opportunity to show well against (Mexican teams) and our regional competition. Then someone from our region gets to try and show well for the region at the global level.”

(How do you feel Santos and Monterrey match up?) “I don’t know that I’m qualified to make that assessment. I do know that Santos is a very, very good team with a lot of weapons. Obviously the fact that (Carlos Darwin) Quintero is out certainly hurts them. He’s a very dangerous player — blazing speed and has scored some good goals for them. But they’ll have a good replacement for him with (Daniel) Luduena and (Marc) Crosas — they’re loaded. We know it’s a huge test and hopefully we’re ready.”

(How much do you try to build the team for success in CCL?) “I think we come at this sort of the same way from year to year, which is to build the best quality team with the best depth possible. To me, it’s dangerous to start designing a team for a two-game series or playoffs a year from now or the U.S. Open Cup — and maybe I’m not smart enough to do that either. All our group is smart enough to do is try to come up with a great quality group of individuals that blend together well and over the course of a season have some good levels of success.”

(Are you disappointed at all in tickets sales for March 7?) “No. I can’t be disappointed in our ticket sales, ever. We’ve obviously blown the doors off of what is sort of typical in soccer and in our league. Again, when you add up the number of tickets that we sell throughout the year and the number of games that we’ve played, at some point there’s a limit to what people are capable of spending money on, are capable of devoting their time to. I think this tournament is certainly still not in the forefront of people’s minds in terms of the way a professional sports team participates in the league. Over time, we’ll build it up. We expect 20-plus thousand fans there and they’ll be hardcore fans, too, because they’re the ones that are probably a little bit more savvy about what this whole things means.”

(Where do you stand in regards to opening up CenturyLink Field for Cascadia games?) “We are considering it. No decisions or announcements yet, but it is something. You guys obviously know that we did sort of a multi-game pack last year and that is under consideration again this year. And probably, again, in the not-too-distant future we’ll make that announcement.”

(Has their been a final decision on away-fan ticket allocations?) “Yes.”

(Can you tell us more about it?) “No. I think that will be forthcoming as part of this other announcement.”

* * *

[View the story ” ” on Storify]


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