The typical post-training meeting at midfield involves Sounders FC head coach Sigi Schmid talking to his players about the session and letting them know about any news and the schedule for the next day. Tuesday at training was a little bit different than normal days though as he broke the news about a scoring change in Seattle’s 2-2 draw with Real Salt Lake.
Tyrone Marshall’s reaction then alerted anyone else within earshot of what the news was.
Seattle scored in the 72nd minute to take a 2-1 lead and, initially RSL defender Nat Borchers was charged with an own-goal. Marshall didn’t seem so sure after the game, but after the league reviewed the play on Monday, they determined that Marshall should get credit for the goal.
“I thought it was my goal in the first place,” Marshall said after his celebratory eruption at midfield. “Nat doesn’t want to take claim for an own-goal, so I’ll take it. No defender wants to. It looks better on the other guy.”
Added Schmid, “He was very happy. I think Freddie Ljungberg was excited to have the assist. It was certainly a well-placed kick. So if it went off Borchers’ head with pressure from Tyrone or if it would have gone off Tyrone’s head, the ball was well played and the runs were good and that’s the reason we got the goal.”
The goal is the first of the season for Marshall and his third in two seasons with the club.
“It’s good to get on the scoring sheet. It helps to put your team in a situation to win the game. We were in that situation and it’s unfortunate that we didn’t close shop in the back to get the win,” Marshall said. “At the end of the day, I got the goal and I’m happy with that. It showed that the practice during the week paid dividends. Hopefully we can get more throughout the year.”
Typically with a conflict with an official statistic, the team will contact the league and ask them to review the play. In this case, the review benefitted all parties involved. It even added an assist to the ledger for Freddie Ljungberg, whose free kick from 20 yards out on the left side resulted in the Marshall goal.
“I thought Tyrone got it with the way the ball went and the way he celebrated,” Ljungberg said. “For me the most important thing was the delivery - that’s what I concentrate on. It came to the right place and Tyrone did his job and headed the ball in.”
The goal came at a great time for the Sounders FC. After struggling through 12 scoreless corner kicks in a 1-0 loss to the New York Red Bulls the previous week, it was a free kick just up the line that led to the go-ahead goal. Now after three games, they have two goals off deep set pieces and are encouraged by their play in dead-ball situations.
“You always want to get better and the problem was we had a lot against New York and it didn’t work. Then I started moving where I was hitting the ball because I felt like we weren’t getting any success,” Ljungberg said. “We talked about having one or two places to hit it then it’s up to the players to run in there. We changed the tactics a bit after New York.”
The scoring change on Tuesday added a bit of light to a locker room that was a bit disappointed after a late goal from Real Salt Lake resulted in the 2-2 draw. Afterward, Ljungberg even jokingly lobbied for a further change to the official scoring.
“Now I’m going to claim Tyrone didn’t touch it. It should be my goal,” Ljungberg laughed.