The Sounders shocked the league when they hosted D.C. United last season, becoming the first team in MLS history to overcome a 3-0 regular-season deficit and win the match in a dramatic home victory.
As they prepare to face D.C. United at home again Saturday, the Seattle players and coaches made it clear they would prefer a win with a little less drama this time around.
The Sounders, second-to-last in the Western Conference, desperately need three points at home against Eastern Conference cellar-dwellers D.C. United. Seattle has failed to score in its last three league matches and has been shut out eight times in 2018. United, meanwhile, head to CenturyLink Field with a 2-5-3 record and has allowed just under two goals per game.
Seattle head coach Brian Schmetzer initially did not want to compare Saturday’s match to last year’s, but when pressed admitted every struggling club is in need of a breakout game.
“We need two or three of them,” Schmetzer said Friday. “You look back at the game in Toronto, you think that might have started something. You look back on the performance at Kansas City, maybe that was going to start something. We’ve had a couple games where we’ve performed well, but we haven’t been able to sustain any sort of momentum.”
Last year’s comeback provided plenty of momentum, serving as the second of six wins in a seven-match span and helping continue an unbeaten run that ran to a club-record 13 games.
Forward Will Bruin, who scored the first goal in the eventual comeback last season, knows how important a match that prompts such a streak may prove for Seattle—or D.C.’s—season.
“I did the math the other day. There are still 69 points on the table. That’s a lot of points still on the table. Right now I know where we’re at, I don’t look higher. We’ve just got to get one step higher each time. We need the first three points, and then we can go on from there. Guys will have more confidence. The doubt that has been creeping in doesn’t affect us anymore. You get three or four wins in a row you jump up the table pretty quickly, and then it will be a different conversation.”