Watch the Sounders, dorks

The local Seattle football team made the championship game! No, not the Seahawks. The other football: “soccer.” Your Seattle Sounders FC will play for the MLS Cup next Sunday, and you should put in a shift of support for the boys on the pitch. It’s a championship game, and the Sounders are one of the premier franchises in Major League Soccer. They are one win away from their second championship in 4 years! The Golden State Warriors barely did better than this. (Editor’s Note: A shame the Warriors couldn’t keep it up.)

Hurry and jump on the bandwagon, you fools.

This article’s purpose is to prime even the newest fan to be ready for the upcoming championship game. Conveniently, this contest is on a Sunday in which the Seahawks do not play, so no worries about splitting your loyalty. You have nothing else to do but watch the Sounders in the MLS Cup, so don’t even try to provide some sort of whimpering excuse to get out of it, you coward.

Let’s dive right in.

Q: Who is the coach people want fired despite consistently great results?

A: Pete Carr…oh sorry, you meant the Sounders‘ coach people wanted fired. Yes, fans spent a large portion of a season that ended in a second-place finish in the conference debating whether the coach should be fired — the Sounders and Seahawks are more alike than you think.

That Sounders coach would be Brian Schmetzer, who looks like he should be helping you figure out how to itemize your deductions at an H&R Block in a strip mall. Schmetzer has spent his entire career playing and then coaching in Seattle, which causes some people to think he’s not big-time enough for a championship-caliber franchise. This is stupid because, once the playoffs start, he’s an absolute shark. “Oh, it’s just Schmetzer,” the analysts said, right before his giant underdog of a team beat the hell out of the ‘best MLS team of all-time’ (LAFC, overrated as all things in California are).

Despite his unassuming figure and the fact that he doesn’t preen like an asshole to seem like an above-it-all genius, he’s a very good coach and the Sounders are lucky to have him instead of, say, Bob Bradley.

Q: Who are all these people out there wearing green jerseys and kicking the ball around? (And why can’t they use their hands?)

A: Soccer players can’t use their hands because everyone would demand that they throw the ball to progress and they unfortunately all throw like Mitch Trubisky. Unlike the Bears, MLS teams would like to score at least occasionally, so they mandate kicking the ball instead.

Some of the Sounders’ best players include:

  • Nicolás Lodeiro, who is small and not particularly fast, but is the very skilled centerpiece of Seattle’s offensive attack while working harder than a dog with a KONG.
  • Jordan Morris, the local kid with a slightly bulky frame that belies his incredible top speed. He’s like watching someone win a drag race with a pickup truck.
  • Stefan Frei, the goalkeeper who is allowed to use his hands (because no rule is too good for an exception) and is reliable for several incredible saves a season. He has an amazing back tattoo as well, which cannot go unmentioned.
  • Gustav Svensson, a Swiss army knife of a player that can fit in anywhere and play smart, effective soccer. He is nicknamed “Goose” and now I’ll reference “Untitled Goose Game” because, like the video game goose, he generally frustrates the players on the other team.
  • There are many other players (Nouhou is one of my personal favorites) and they all have their endearing qualities. It’s a fun team.

Q: What are Seattle’s strengths and weaknesses?

A: The Sounders do not have any weaknesses, they are perfect, we’re done here.

Okay, fine. Seattle, outside of a few players such as Morris, do not have a lot of team speed. While they looked practically invulnerable against LAFC, the defense has been leaky at times. 

Strength-wise, when their full complement of attacking players are on the field (including Raul Ruidiaz and Victor Rodriguez) they are as dangerous as anyone. Frei is one of the better shot-stopping keepers in the league. Their fans also do not throw beer cans on the field when they are mad (hi again, LAFC).

Q: Which group of frauds that I will hate with the burning passion of one thousand suns will the Sounders play in the MLS Cup?

A: It’s America vs. Canada. The Sounders’ opponent is Toronto FC, the same bunch of jabronis that Seattle beat to win their first MLS Cup and then lost to the following year when attempting to repeat. They have some people who do not matter on their team. Don’t learn their names! It makes them easier to dislike for a day. Tactically, they’ll try to kick the ball around and hope to luck into a goal or something. I don’t know, I already hate them.

Q: Cool, I can’t wait to watch!

A: Watch the damn soccer team try to win another championship!