Weber thrust into the lineup after crazy week
Posted by: Matt Gaschk
The on-loan goalkeeper was forced into a very tough situation with the Sounders after Michael Gspurning sustained an arm injury at San Jose.
It has been a hectic week for Andrew Weber.
He started the week with his hometown Phoenix FC Wolves in the USL Pro where he had started 14 matches in the club’s inaugural season. On Wednesday, he flew to Seattle, where he played in the 2012 season with Sounders FC. By the end of the day on Thursday, Phoenix and Seattle completed an agreement to loan the 29-year-old goalkeeper to Sounders FC, where backups Marcus Hahnemann and Josh Ford were both out with injuries.
He trained with the team on Thursday and Friday and flew with the team to San Jose to face the Earthquakes on Saturday.
At Buck Shaw Stadium, he would assume the same role he had played in his six different seasons in MLS – backing up a stalwart goalkeeper knowing that only an injury or suspension would mean playing time.
In the first half of Saturday’s match, Seattle starter Michael Gspurning made a diving stop on an Alan Gordon header for his second tremendous save to keep Sounders FC in the match. As he made the save, San Jose forward Steve Lenhart followed through and stepped on Gspurning’s left arm. While he was being tended to by Seattle’s medical staff on the field, Weber started warming up, readying to enter the match at a moment’s notice.
Gspurning would continue the match, but goalkeeper coach Tom Dutra made sure that Weber continued warming up so if Gspurning wasn’t able to return for the second half, Weber would be ready to play.
As the rest of the team streamed out of the tunnel after the halftime break, it became clear that Weber would be called upon, so he strapped on his gloves and manned the Seattle net.
“It was unfortunate what happened to Mike,” Weber said after the match. “Like anyone, you have to be ready to go in at any given time and perform and try to help your team win.”
His start would be rocky, as Walter Martinez scored the only goal of the match just three minutes into Weber’s second stint with Sounders FC. But from that point on, he held off the Earthquakes, finishing the night with two saves in a 1-0 Seattle defeat.
In his six seasons, Weber has just six appearances and a 1.60 goals against average, but he continues to be a steady option for Seattle as they await a prognosis on Gspurning’s injury and the return of Hahnemann from the hamstring injury he suffered last week in a Reserve League match against the Vancouver Whitecaps FC.
However and whenever he is needed, Weber knows his role with Seattle.
“I’m fortunate to be here and have an opportunity to give the team help when it’s needed,” he said. “Whatever happens, I just have to be ready.”