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May 5, 2012 at 2:10 AM

Sounders FC 2, L.A. Galaxy 0, player ratings

hurtado la.jpgPhoto credit: Ken Lambert, The Seattle Times

This one could’ve been worse. Much worse. Fredy Montero could’ve had three goals — though the one was gone enough for three. Eddie Johnson could’ve had three goals, too. It was the type of dominance you’d expect considering the look of the lineups.

The Galaxy didn’t bring it’s full complement of stars and the Sounders made them pay for it. In the end, it was clearly Seattle’s most complete performance of the season, even as there’s definitely still some room for improvement on offense.

We’ll see some high ratings in this one. Maybe Bruce Arena is to blame for the inflation, but that’s how it goes. Let’s get to it (10 — world class, 5.5. — average, 1 — dreadful):

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GK Michael Gspurning (off 45) — Didn’t have too many notes except for the big one: He aggravated his right hip injury late in the first half and had to be subbed off at halftime. Kasey Keller suggested on the broadcast that the inactivity might’ve led to it tightening up. We’ll look to see him in two to three weeks. 5.5

D Zach Scott — Stood up well to Landon Donovan, Brian Gaul or whoever came down his side. Dominant in the air and very physical. Was a bit loose with possession at times. Thought he had his second goal of the season in the 35th minute, but Montero had been flagged offside earlier. Nice to see him get a longboard/paddleboard after Friday’s practice to commemorate his 10 years as a Sounder. 7.5

D Jeff Parke — Had just about a flawless second half from what I saw, with lots of good individual defending and duels won. Did have one fatal error at the end of the first half that led to a breakaway chance for Chad Barrett, but it didn’t turn into a goal. 7

D Jhon Kennedy Hurtado — Keeps getting chances in the offensive third, so I think a goal might be coming for him. First half was very solid and included a shoving bout with Barrett. Had a couple instances where guys beat him in the second half (Mike Magee 64′ and Edson Buddle 68′), which were marks against him. 7

D Leo Gonzalez — Continues to put in good shifts on the left. Not a lot of the action came his way as Sean Franklin was pretty invisible as a right midfielder. He did have a misplay in the second half that led to Landon Donovan’s shot on goal, but it wasn’t punished. Gets forward well and seems to be developing some chemistry with Marc Burch as a midfielder. 6.5

M Mauro Rosales (off 74) — Took a bunch of tumbles to start the game, which was no surprise with Gaul making his MLS debut as a left back against him. Would’ve had the assist on a Montero goal were it not for a big Bill Gaudette save in the 10th minute. Got that assist a half hour later on a pinpoint cross to Eddie Johnson. Less involved in the second half. Was inconsistent with his free kicks and lost possession a few more times than you expect, but looked strong toward the end of the game, which means he might be closer to being 90-minutes fit. 7.5

M Osvaldo Alonso — We know about his defensive abilities, and those were definitely on display, but I thought his passing was excellent. Got the assist on Montero’s goal, which might seem generous, but he did extremely well to win the ball and earn the possession. Had another assist waved off because Montero was offside earlier. Certainly getting more than his fair share of shots to the groin. Very good all the way through. 8.5

M Brad Evans — Got off a little bit of a shaky start in possession, but settled in soon enough. Had a near miss in the 17th minute and set up an EJ breakaway in the 50th minute that really should’ve been an assist. Was taken out on a hard tackle by Sarvas that drew a yellow card and also took a shoulder to the face at one point, but played through it. Wasn’t involved as much in breaking up plays, but won eight headers, which was second best on the team to Johnson’s nine. 7

M David Estrada — Versatility saw him play three positions on the night, and don’t think that isn’t valuable. He started on the left, went to the right after the Rosales sub and then up top after the Johnson sub. You would’ve liked to see him have more of an impact in the final third. Just missed on a couple crosses to EJ and was tackled off a ball a few times. Never gets tired and makes it count by working hard through stoppage time. 5.5

F Fredy Montero — The breakthrough arrives, and what a goal it was. One to remember for sure. Probably the best I can remember on the beat. Did have some notables misses early with the 10th-minute chance and 23rd-minute rebound denied by Gaudette. Had some good chances at secondary assists with link-up play in the final third. Holdup play was good and helped kill time well at the end. Very active and involved again and this time it led to a goal. 8.5

F Eddie Johnson (off 81) — Two games. Two goals. Two winners. Teammates are starting to learn his tendencies in runs and field position, and it’s starting to show. Did well to get a 40th-minute cross by Rosales on target and it paid off in a goal. Won a team-high nine headers and continues to be a target up front. Drew some fouls and put in the work. Should’ve finished a 50th-minute breakaway and maybe another chance or two, but is really settling in nicely. 8


GK Bryan Meredith (on 45) — Looked calm and in control during his MLS debut. Had a solid first save on Donovan in the 62nd minute. Was much more active than Gspurning in the first half as L.A. pressed the action, but he was up to it. Let’s see how he does as a starter. 6.5

M Marc Burch (on 74) — Continues to work pretty well as a left midfielder when the Sounders are holding a lead. Interchanges with Gonzalez at times, which works nicely. 5.5

M Alex Caskey (on 81) — Made the most of his limited time by winning possession, drawing fouls and wasting time. INC


Another new lineup, another win. The lineup choice was about as strong as it could be, so there are no issues there. It’s easy to look at the Galaxy lineup when it comes to this result, but cashed in on the opportunity with three points. 7.5


Had things mostly in control and only had to go to the book once, which was the right call on Sarvas. Had a few interesting calls, too, but that’s always going to happen. I don’t think either team had much of a gripe with how things went and he stated out of the way nicely. 8

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What do you think? Who’s too high? Too low?


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