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Sounders Extinguish Fire, Advance to US Open Cup Final

US Open Cup

courtesy Seattle Sounders FC Facebook Page

The Seattle Sounders and Chicago Fire have won a combined seven US Open Cup titles. Chicago holds an MLS record four championships, the most recent coming in 2006. Chicago have played in a whopping 10 US Open Cup semifinal matches. The Sounders’ most recent US Open Cup championship came in 2011, against Chicago. None of that mattered when the two teams squared off Wednesday night in Tukwila, WA. The winner would advance to face the Philadelphia Union in Chester, PA on September 16th.

The night began with Chicago on the verge of augmenting their place in US Open Cup history, went up in flames as they set the wrong kind of record. In the end, Chicago went home on the heels of a 6-0 drubbing by the Sounders.

Seattle got on the board in the 6th minute after forward Kenny Cooper put the ball across the mouth of the goal and a streaking Chad Barrett got his foot on it and put it in the back of the net for an early lead that the Sounders would never give up. The Sounders extended the lead in the 34th minute after Andy Rose found himself open in the box off a corner kick. He managed to zip a header past the near post to give Seattle a 2-0 first-half cushion.

It’s not as if the Fire didn’t have their chances in the first half. Seattle goalkeeper Stefan Frei had to make a few key saves to keep them off the board. Their best chance game in the 17th minute off a shot from inside the Seattle box from star rookie Harry Shipp, but Frei was able to deflect the ball away.

Rose sealed the deal in the second half when he scored his second of the night in the 58th minute after receiving a pin point pass from Marco Pappa. Seattle then poured it on late in the second half, scoring three goals in five minutes. Obafemi Martins scored the fourth goal of the night in the 79th minute. Cooper scored his 5th and 6th goals of the tournament in a two minute span. Cooper now has 13 career US Open Cup goals.

Fire Head Coach Frank Yallop admitted he was “shocked and stunned” at his team’s 6-0 defeat, their worst ever defeat in Open Cup history.

“I’m shocked and stunned by the result,” a deflated Yallop told reporters after the game. “Seattle were better in every department and it ends up a rout. In the semifinal of anything it’s shocking. At 2-0 down you still have a half chance of getting back in the game, but once the third goal goes in we’ve just got to see the game through, really,” Yallop conceded. “You’re not going to get anything out of that match and we were still very naïve in what we did after that. It’s where we’re at; we have a great result at home against New York and then our next game we get beat 6-0. If there’s one word I’d use it would be ‘shocking’ to describe the difference in performance.”

If you just looked at the possession stat after the match and nothing else, you would think Chicago won this match as they had 57 percent possession and made 79 percent of 483 passes, in contrast to the Sounders’ 43 percent of 357. Seattle however had 19 shots, 11 on target and Chicago 14, three on target.

Here are some quotes from Seattle after the match

“Sometimes when it rains, it pours,” Seattle head coach Sigi Schmid told reporters after the game.

“It was great,” Schmid said of Rose’s return performance. “He’s been held back a little bit with injuries and trying to get his fitness back. Andy gives you something because when he can come forward, he’s dangerous on set pieces like he is and I also thought he played some good balls in… It’s nice to have him back in the mix.”

“I thought the team looked determined throughout the whole game,” Cooper said. “Whether we were up two goals or three, just never stopped, just kept going at them. It was a fun one to be a part of.”

“It was nice to come back and contribute to a big win,” Rose said. “I’ve felt really good that last 2-3 weeks so I knew if I kept on doing that a chance would come and obviously to take advantage of it feels great.”

Seattle has a month until the play in the final. This will be their fifth final in six seasons since joining MLS. It soould be a fun and exciting match for both fan bases as Philadelphia has improved drastically since the two met earlier in the year.

Goals

6′ – Chad Barrett (Kenny Cooper)

33′ – Andy Rose (Marco Pappa)

58′ – Andy Rose (Marco Pappa)

79′ – Obafemi Martins (Kenny Cooper)

83′ – Kenny Cooper (DeAndre Yedlin)

84′ – Kenny Cooper (Obafemi Martins)

Chris Blakely is the Lead Writer/Editor for StoppageTimeSoccer. You can follow him on Twitter @TheRealCBlakely, like him on Facebook or add him to your Google circles.

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One Response to Sounders Extinguish Fire, Advance to US Open Cup Final

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