Featured Matches
Previous
Arsenal
Besiktas
1
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Athletic Bilbao
Napoli
3
1
ESPNDeportes FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 4 - 2
Game Details
Bayer Leverkusen
FC Copenhagen
4
0
ESPN3 FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 7 - 2
Game Details
Aston Villa
Leyton Orient
0
1
FT
Game Details
Birmingham City
Sunderland
0
3
FT
Game Details
Stoke City
Portsmouth
3
0
FT
Game Details
Burton Albion
Queens Park Rangers
1
0
FT
Game Details
Arsenal
Besiktas
1
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Athletic Bilbao
Napoli
3
1
ESPNDeportes FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 4 - 2
Game Details
Bayer Leverkusen
FC Copenhagen
4
0
ESPN3 FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 7 - 2
Game Details
Ludogorets Razgrad
Steaua Bucuresti
1
0
ESPN3 FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
Malmo FF
SV Salzburg
3
0
ESPN3 FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 4 - 2
Game Details
Aston Villa
Leyton Orient
0
1
FT
Game Details
Birmingham City
Sunderland
0
3
FT
Game Details
Bradford City
Leeds United
2
1
FT
Game Details
Burton Albion
Queens Park Rangers
1
0
FT
Game Details
Stoke City
Portsmouth
3
0
FT
Game Details
Los Angeles Galaxy
DC United
4
1
FT
Game Details
León
Herediano
1
1
FT
Game Details
Municipal
Pachuca
3
7
FT
Game Details
Cobresal
General Díaz
2
2
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 4
Game Details
Independiente Terán
Trujillanos
1
1
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Libertad
Nacional Potosí
3
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 3 - 1
Game Details
River Plate
Universidad Católica
3
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 4 - 0
Game Details
Internacional
Bahia
0
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Alianza Lima
Barcelona
0
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 3
Game Details
Atlético Nacional
Deportivo La Guaira
1
0
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Atletico Rafaela
Newell's Old Boys
2
3
FT
Game Details
Rosario Central
Godoy Cruz de Mendoza
0
1
FT
Game Details
River Plate
Defensa y Justicia
3
0
FT
Game Details
Estudiantes La Plata
Boca Juniors
3
1
FT
Game Details
Irapuato
U.A.N.L
2
1
FT
Game Details
Morelia
Celaya
3
0
ESPNDeportes FT
Game Details
Oaxaca
Chiapas
2
0
FT
Game Details
Atlas
Mineros de Zacatecas
1
0
FT
Game Details
Correcaminos
Santos
2
3
FT
Game Details
UNAM
Mérida
1
2
FT
Game Details
Zacatepec
Guadalajara
0
2
ESPNDeportes FT
Game Details
América RN
Atletico Paranaense
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Cruzeiro
Santa Rita
5
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Botafogo
Ceará
1
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Bragantino
Corinthians
1
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
Flamengo
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Palmeiras
Atlético MG
0
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
LDU Quito
Deportivo Quito
3
0
FT
Game Details
FC Seoul
Pohang Steelers
0
0
FT-Pens
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0FC Seoul win 3-0 on penalties
Game Details
Guangzhou Evergrande
Western Sydney Wanderers
2
1
FT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 2
Game Details
Amazulu
Bloem Celtic
0
2
FT
Game Details
Mamelodi Sundowns
Orlando Pirates
0
3
FT
Game Details
Pretoria Univ
Free State Stars
0
1
FT
Game Details
Silver Stars
Kaizer Chiefs
0
2
FT
Game Details
SuperSport United
Mpumalanga Black Aces
1
2
FT
Game Details
Saprissa
Santos
Postp
Game Details
Carmelita
Club Sport Uruguay
2
0
FT
Game Details
Cartagines
Perez Zeledon
Postp
Postponed - now being played Sun, Aug 31
Game Details
Antigua
Marquense
0
1
FT
Game Details
Petapa
Coatepeque
Postp
Game Details
Vida
Marathon
3
1
FT
Game Details
Next

Serie A season preview: AS Roma

AS Roma 12 hours ago
Read
Mar 20, 2009

Sounders make Red Bulls look like an expansion team

SEATTLE -- Opening night for the MLS incarnation of the Seattle Sounders had all the feeling of a blockbuster movie premiere. There was the excited, energetic audience, which helped create a dramatic backdrop. There was Sigi Schmid serving as the award-winning director, showing why his magic touch as coach had led to honors in the past. And then there was Fredy Montero, who played the role of leading man, providing moments of brilliance on a night that won't soon be forgotten in Seattle.

A sea of emerald-green jerseys and scarves filled Qwest Stadium in a stunning display that demanded a impressive performance from the home team. The Sounders delivered a 3-0 win over New York, jumping on the Red Bulls with two first-half goals and an relentless attack that kept the visitors on their back foot for much of the match. Seattle took its chances well and prevented the Red Bulls from finding many of their own. Montero put the finishing touch on the victory by forcing a turnover and scoring his second goal of the night, writing the ending to a perfect start for MLS's 15th franchise.

"You saw it out there today," Schmid said. "It exceeded everything I expected. Guys who've been in this community for a long time, it's got to just make them so proud of what happened.

"It was everything I expected and more, and I think it will continue to be."

"It's like a reward for all those people who've done all the hard work to prepare where we are today," Sounders technical director Chris Henderson said. "I grew up watching the Sounders in the NASL and I never forgot the atmosphere, and I think those fans have been here and I think soccer's been forgotten a little bit in Seattle, but now it's back."

MLS Fantasy 2009
Sign up now for the free MLS fantasy game

It's hard to argue with that sentiment, considering the 22,000 season tickets Seattle has sold. The Sounders filled cavernous Qwest Field with knowledgeable fans who helped create the soundtrack of an experienced soccer crowd, rather than simply an excited crowd enjoying something new.

Whether seasoned soccer experts or new fans taking in their first match, all the Sounders fans in attendance could appreciate the two-goal, one-assist performance Montero delivered in his MLS debut. At times, he seemed to toy with the Red Bulls, making the ball do his bidding like a cat with a ball of string. He showed every aspect of his game on Thursday, from dead-eye finishing, to pinpoint passing, to creativity on the ball.

"There's things that he does, it doesn't matter what league you're in," Henderson said of Montero. "It's not only what he does in front of goal. It's the stuff he does setting up other players and his velvet touch."

If the night was a perfect one for the Sounders, it was a perfectly awful one for the Red Bulls. Coach Juan Carlos Osorio fielded a slow back four that seemed tailor-made for a dismantling at the hands of a speedy Seattle attack. With Montero using his vision and passing ability to pick apart the Red Bulls, fellow attackers Sanna Nyassi and Sebastian Le Toux running rings around their opponents, and the Sounders' defense applying constant pressure on the Red Bulls' top playmakers, New York never stood a chance.

"The first goal changed the whole game," Osorio said. "After that, we just found it hard to get our attacking players in the game. There were one too many missing today. If I am honest, I would probably say we only had one or two players playing to their potential.

"We tried to compete, but we were just too far away from them. It would be very unfair to say that it was just the back four or back five. I think, in general, we were very poor."

The Red Bulls are buoyed by the knowledge that help is on the way in the coming weeks. Newly acquired fullbacks Alfredo Pacheco and Carlos Johnson should be eligible to play for the Red Bulls in the next two weeks, as should Spanish midfielder Albert Celades. Throw in left winger Khano Smith, who missed Thursday's match due to suspension, and Seth Stammler, who missed the match recovering from knee surgery, and you have five players Osorio will be in a hurry to put in his starting lineup after Thursday's thoroughly disappointing display.

Whether or not those reinforcements will help the Red Bulls turn things around remains to be seen, but one thing is clear. New York looked more like an expansion team than Seattle did, still working out the kinks after piecing together a team in the offseason.

The Sounders, on the other hand, looked like a team capable of making its inaugural season an unforgettable one. Backed by a captivated city and a fervent fan base, the newest team in MLS is off to a dream start that will have the rest of the league wondering what the Sounders will do for an encore.

Ives Galarcep covers MLS for ESPNsoccernet. He also writes a blog, Soccer By Ives. He can be reached at Ivespn79@aol.com.

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.