TORONTO – For the first time in the 2013 MLS regular season, Sounders FC Head Coach Sigi Schmid will use the same starting lineup for two consecutive matches.
On Saturday against Toronto FC, Schmid will use the same lineup that he started last week in a 3-0 win over FC Dallas at CenturyLink Field. In addition, three important players for Seattle will be on the bench, as Clint Dempsey readies for his Sounders FC debut and Michael Gspurning and Shalrie Joseph return from injuries.
Marcus Hahnemann will again start in goal for Seattle, making his second MLS start since joining the team last September. He posted a clean sheet against Dallas last week, his first start in the league in over 14 years after a lengthy career in England. His play in that match and longer time in training earned him the nod over Gspurning, who has been in full training for just one week.
On defense will be DeAndre Yedlin, Patrick Ianni, Djimi Traore and Leo Gonzalez. The midfield will consist of Mauro Rosales, Osvaldo Alonso, Brad Evans and Lamar Neagle. Evans has two goals and one assist in the last two matches while Rosales has one assist in each of the last two matches.
At forward, the combination of Eddie Johnson and Obafemi Martins will look to extend Seattle’s three-match unbeaten streak. Johnson scored the first ever goal at BMO Field when he was playing with Kansas City in 2007. Martins has one goal and two assists in the last two matches.
On the bench, Seattle will have Gspurning, Zach Scott, Marc Burch, Dempsey, Shalrie Joseph, Servando Carrasco and Eriq Zavaleta.
They will go up against a Toronto team that is also looking to keep rolling after posting a 2-0-1 record in the last three matches.
Like Seattle, Toronto FC also brought back some talent from injury and has new additions to their roster and will be using them off the bench. Head Coach Ryan Nelsen starts a lineup of goalkeeper Joe Bendik; defenders Richard Eckersley, Steve Caldwell, Doneil Henry and Ashtone Morgan; a midfield of Reggie Lambe, Matias Laba, Jonathan Osorio and Bobby Convey; and forwards Andrew Wiedeman and Jeremy Brockie.
New signings Alvaro Rey and Jonas Elmer will be on the bench, along with forward Robert Earnshaw, who leads the team with six goals but is coming off an injury. They are joined by Stefan Frei, Gale Agbossoumonde, Justin Braun and Jeremy Hall.