Seattle Sounders fans may not be have been able to celebrate a goal before the halftime whistle, but they have much more to smile about in the match against New York Red Bulls than they did when the L.A. Galaxy came to town on Tuesday. Aside from the first ten minutes or so of play, in which the home side dominated, Seattle has looked bright, linking up their play well and making New York goalkeeper Greg Sutton work for his supper.
Inside five minutes, the Red Bulls had had two shots on goal, the first one that squirmed away from Kasey Keller for a corner kick. From the resulting corner, Thierry Henry hit the ball on the volley, but the shot went wide. The worst was still to come for the Sounders, however, as Jhon Kennedy Hurtado took out Juan Agudelo inside the area. Henry stepped up to take the resulting penalty kick, placing his shot low and to the left, but Keller guessed correctly and collected the shot.
Something about the saved penalty gave the Sounders an extra burst of energy, or a moral boost, or something intangible that we can impose on the players. Fredy Montero is sizzling (and this time, I'm not just talking about his kit), subtly showing off his trickery while also reminding the world that he can hit the target from long range. The best chance, however, came after Montero enjoyed a little back - and - forth with Alvaro Fernandez, before sending a shot in to Sutton. The ball spilled out of his hands and despite O'Brian White being right in front of him, the forward barely moved toward the ball, allowing Sutton to gather again.
The attack, particularly the links between Montero and Fernandez, looks to be falling into place, but Sounders fans should also be pleased as punch with the debut of midfielder Servando Carrasco. The newbie managed an excellent save in the 33rd minute, preventing a certain Red Bulls goal, and has looked more likely than James Riley to sop up any mess at the back.