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Seattle Sounders look to reestablish home dominance against Colorado Rapids

Sep 19, 2018; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Sounders FC defender Kelvin Leerdam (18) talks with defender Brad Smith (11) following a 1-0 loss against the Philadelphia Union at CenturyLink Field. (Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports)

The Seattle Sounders will hope to make CenturyLink Field a fortress once again during their Saturday home match against the Colorado Rapids. A recent blunder against the Philadelphia Union snapped a nine-match win streak for Seattle, which has struggled to maintain its traditional home form in 2018.

“That Philly game was a gut punch,” Sounders coach Brian Schmetzer said Wednesday. “(If we had won), nobody makes a big deal if we lose in LA. It might have been expected. Away games are hard to win, but that Philly game, we should have done a little bit better, could have done a little bit better, to collect three points out of that game.”

The Sounders lost the match on a last-second error by keeper Stefan Frei, creating an atmosphere of shock in the locker room. The club seemed to still be shaking off the cobwebs in a 3-0 trouncing by the Galaxy on the road days later.

“We didn’t like the way we played,” Schmetzer said. “We watched all three goals that we took, because they were uncharacteristically bad goals that we had given up. Not just the singular play, the penalty, the tap-in or a missed clearance, but the entire sequence and how we could do better. This wasn’t one of my shining moments, but we’re going to correct that. We’re for sure going to correct that.”

Seattle is 7-5-2 at home this season, short of the club’s usual dominance in the Emerald City. Prior to a big boost from the club’s 12-match unbeaten streak, its home record was a dismal 2-4-2, a far cry from the sort of play that caused Seattle to go 11-1-5 at home in 2017.

“It’s a very important home game because we lost our last one,” Sounders midfielder Gustav Svensson said Wednesday. “That was an even tougher result. At home we should always win, so we have to show that we can do better.”

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