Matchday Central: @ Toronto FC

All the news and notes you need to know before Seattle meets Toronto in their only matchup of the 2013 season.

Sounders FC @ Toronto FC
August 10, 2013, 4 pm PT; BMO Field in Toronto
TV/Radio: KONG 6/16; KIRO Radio 97.3 FM; La Gran D 99.3 FM (Spanish)

Toronto FC’s Record: Toronto is ninth in the 10-team Eastern Conference at 4-10-8, but is unbeaten at 2-0-1 in its last three matches.

All-time series: Seattle leads Toronto 5-1-1 since joining MLS in 2009, the lone defeat coming at BMO Field in 2010. In the last meeting Seattle got a hat trick from David Estrada to open the 2012 season with a 3-1 victory at CenturyLink Field.

Injury Report: Sounders FC – OUT: M Alex Caskey (R ankle impingement); GK Josh Ford (R patella fracture); M Philip Lund (R plantar fasciitis) M Steve Zakuani (athletic pubalgia). QUESTIONABLE: GK Michael Gspurning (L forearm sprain); M Shalrie Joseph (R calf strain); M Clint Dempsey (viral illness). Toronto FC – OUT: None. QUESTIONABLE: Danny Koevermans (L calf strain).

Key player: Robert Earnshaw started the season with five goals in Toronto’s first six matches as The Reds went 1-2-3. However, he has just one goal in 11 appearances since and missed five of the last seven matches because of injury. Saturday could mark his return, but will that disrupt the team’s form or enhance it?

Notes: It is expected that newly signed midfielder Clint Dempsey will make his Sounders FC debut on Saturday. The 30-year-old U.S. National Team captain was introduced as the club’s latest Designated Player last Saturday before a 3-0 win over FC Dallas. He had two full training sessions with the team this week. … With the addition of Dempsey, Seattle now has five players with English Premier League experience – Dempsey, Eddie Johnson, Obafemi Martins, Djimi Traore and Marcus Hahnemann. … Seattle and Toronto are both 2-0-1 in the last three MLS matches. … Only two players remain from the 14 players that appeared for Toronto FC in the season-opening match at CenturyLink Field in 2012 – Danny Koevermans and Richard Eckersley. … Seattle’s lone defeat to Toronto came in 2010, and the team has since outscored Toronto 10-3 in four victories. … Toronto is 0-5-2 against Western Conference opponents and has lost four straight.

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