The clock is counting down on the summer transfer window — the month-long period when MLS teams can sign international players — without much action so far from the Sounders.
The last few personnel moves (releasing Christian Sivebaek and signing Daniel Steres in June, the recent retirement of Roger Levesque) haven’t had much to do with the transfer window or had much influence on the first team.
If Seattle is going to make a big addition, it will have to be done by the end of the week as the window closes Friday. Last year, if you remember, the Sounders failed in their midseason attempts to bring in a DP forward.
With that in mind, I asked coach Sigi Schmid today if he think anything will get done.
“We’re always looking. We’re always seeing what’s out there,” he said. “It’s a fluid situation. It changes by the day — some things by the hour, some things by the minute. We’re always looking to see if we can improve our team with moves that makes sense and that help our team. Sometimes it works out. Sometimes it doesn’t work out. You look at some of the moves teams have been able to make and obviously part of it is based upon connections or people having an interest in playing in a certain city or something like that, and that allows them to make those moves. So we’re looking at things, but we try not to talk about it until we get to a point where we’re ready to announce it.”
I followed up by asking Schmid if he thinks the Sounders are capable of achieving all their goals this season without a significant signing during the transfer window (MLS teams can still make trades until the Sept. 15 roster freeze).
“Yeah, without a doubt,” the coach said. “I think when you look at teams who have won the championship, it’s the teams that are together, are motivated and are committed at the end of the year, and are in a good run, and you have a little bit of good fortune, where it bounces your way. So you look at that. Again, you go back in just a few years, Salt Lake barely made it into the playoffs and they won the championship. Colorado, same thing and won the championship. L.A. was a very motivated, very committed team last year because of their senior players really wanting to get after it and to win it, and so guys sacrificed and put the work in. Adding Robbie Keane helped them, for sure, but I think it was the commitment of the entire team that really pushed them through that final phase.
“I think we have the people here that we can do it. It’s just a matter of making sure that we raise our level of play in the playoffs, which with the exception of I think Game 2 against Salt Lake last year was something that we were struggling trying to do. But we’ve shown we can raise the level of play in important games through the U.S. Open Cup and winning championships and advancing to the semifinals, so we have to take that championship mentality that we’ve had in the Open Cup and carry that into the MLS Cup.”
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What do you think? Do you think the Sounders must make a move before Friday’s close of the transfer window?