The Sounders look to break a two-match losing streak when they welcome Chivas USA to CenturyLink Field on Saturday afternoon.
Last time out: Sounders 4, Chivas USA 2 on Sept. 3 at the StubHub Center — Obafemi Martins and Andy Rose each netted a pair of first-half goals as Seattle romped to a 4-0 halftime lead.
Battle to watch: The Seattle defense versus itself
The Sounders have now allowed first-half goals in each of their last four matches, going down 1-0 in all of them. Most worryingly, most of those goals against have come as a result of defensive miscues, from missed tackles to poor marking.
When the Sounders faced Chivas at the beginning of the month, the Goats hadn’t scored a goal in nearly 600 minutes before they pulled a pair back in the second half — and they haven’t scored since.
The way those tallies came about was typical: Momentary lapses of concentration that ended in clean looks on goal.
If the Sounders are serious about tightening up at the back, a game in which they’re likely to build a comfortable lead on the other end of the field is a golden opportunity to shore up discipline.
Player to watch: Chivas USA striker Erick “Cubo” Torres
“These guys are trying to impress other coaches around the league, because if they do go on hiatus, where do those players go?” Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said of Chivas, which hasn’t won a match since mid-July and has long since dropped out of the playoff hunt.
“How will they get dispersed? There’s still a lot of motivating factors for every player on that team.”
Torres is the fifth-leading scorer in MLS despite the lack of help around him and recently earned a call-up to the Mexican national team. He was No. 2 on MLS’ list of “24 under 24” released this week — one headed by current Seattle right back DeAndre Yedlin.
Torres is currently on loan from Chivas’ parent club in Mexico, and he’s one player that will have no problem finding a place to play next year, whether in MLS or abroad.
For now, though, he’s one of the few bright spots on a team that might not even exist next year.
And he’s the lone threat to Seattle taking anything but all three points Saturday.
How to watch: The match will be televised locally on JOEtv, with kickoff slated for 1 p.m.