May 5, 2018; Seattle, WA, USA; Columbus Crew midfielder Cristian Martinez (left) holds off Seattle Sounders FC defender Nouhou (right) during the first half at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
The Seattle Sounders and Columbus Crew played to a 0-0 draw at CenturyLink Field Saturday. Despite playing a man up the majority of the match, Seattle was unable to generate more than one shot on goal.
Here are three takeaways from the draw.
1) Nicolas Lodeiro foot injury
Nicolas Lodeiro, who practiced indoors at Seattle’s training facility during the run-up to Saturday’s match, was omitted from the 18-man roster by what the club called a “coach’s decision.”
Brian Schmetzer explained the situation after the match.
“He’s got a foot injury, and we were hoping he would play,” Schmetzer said. “But, we decided that he wasn’t going to be able to play. We are going to continue to evaluate him because he’s an important player for our club. And we’ll just take it game by game. There’s a possibility for Wednesday. There’s a possibility for Saturday. We’ll just continue to evaluate him.”
2) Sounders dissatisfied with level of play
The atmosphere in Seattle’s locker room was somber after the result. Players were quiet as they changed out of their gear and slowly filtered out of the room.
Forward Will Bruin said the team was annoyed with its performance, and that the players did not feel they had performed up to their potential.
“We were too slow,” Bruin said. “We moved it too slow, we were too predictable. We just didn’t even try to play through the final third, I think everyone in the stadium knew we were going to get it and try to cross it, you’ve got to find other ways to create chances, and we just haven’t been able to do it.”
With five points from seven matches, Seattle is dead last in the Western Conference, averaging less than a point per match.
3) Frustration mounting
Earlier in the week, an impassioned Brian Schmetzer told media Seattle’s players would never quit on the team or its fans. Adverse results and lackluster play, however, seem to be taking their toll on the club.
Schmetzer couldn’t even muster up enthusiasm for Seattle’s first clean sheet of the year.
“The shutout really doesn’t mean anything to us right now,” Schmetzer said. “It’s a product of Columbus sitting back and looking for counterattack opportunities, but it’s really not on our mind.”
Right back Kelvin Leerdam said that despite the difficulty, trying to remain positive would be important as Seattle prepares for tough road trips to Toronto FC on Wednesday and down to the Portland Timbers May 13.
“I think you need to be positive in every situation,” Leerdam said. “I know it’s tough for us and tough for the fans and tough for everyone in the sporting world day in and day out. It’s what we have to do tomorrow again and you’ve got to work hard and hopefully the next game brings us three points.”