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CS Herediano 1-2 Seattle Sounders: Montero Brace Powers Seattle To A Win

It probably wasn't as easy as the Sounders had hoped but a win is a win and the Seattle Sounders now sit at the top of the group with nine points. And with Monterrey falling to CD Communicaciones, the Sounders now look to be in very good shape where advancing out of the group stage is concerned. The Sounders aren't through just yet, but it would take a surge from Monterrey and a complete collapse by the Sounders to put them at any real risk of missing the quarterfinals.

The second half started a bit less pro,ising than the first with Herediano making some headway into the Sounders final third, but after an initial surge from the home side Seattle regained control. In the 54th minute Nate Jaqua headed to Roger Levesque in space at the edge of the box who put a cross towards the back post. The ball might have been headed in on its own right but Fredy Montero made certain, put a kiss of a touch onto it and putting Seattle ahead. The Sounders continued to threaten but were unable to nab a third, and as time ticked away Seattle tucked in and hung on, moving to a narrow formation with a very deep alignment, the back line soaking up all direct attacks and the midfield snuffing out all creativity. There were a few nervous moments late in the going but nothing Kasey Keller was not equal to, and though it wasn't the most beautiful or comprehensive win in Sounders history it was still well deserved. Had it not been for Herediano's very questionable penalty at the end of the first half, the score line would have likely been a more accurate reflection of the run of play.

The Sounders are now the only team with nine points in the whole of the group stage. That's a huge boost to their chances in CCL play but it's also a positive development in terms of their standing in the league; with the quarterfinals all but sewn up, Seattle can now afford to take more of a risk in terms of who they put on the field for the final three games of the group stage and put the lion's share of their focus on domestic play for the remainder of the season. That's not something a whole lot of people would have expected at this point in the competition, and though Seattle might be weakened in terms of their options this weekend against DC United, the tradeoff is likely worth it.