Press Release

Five Sounders FC players called-in for national team play

Morris 10.2

Five Sounders FC players have been called-in to national team play in early October. Forward Jordan Morris is set to step into duty for Jurgen Klinsmann's U.S. Men's National Team squad as it plays two friendlies in preparation for the CONCACAF Hexagonal round, which is set to take place in November and determines which teams continue in FIFA World Cup Qualifying. Midfielder Nicolás Lodeiro has also been named to the Uruguayan National Team for additional CONMEBOL qualifiers against Venezuela and Colombia. For the Caribbean Football Union, defender Joevin Jones has been called-in to Trinidad and Tobago and defenders Oniel Fisher and Damion Lowe join the Jamaican team squad as all three face 2017 Caribbean Cup Qualifiers.

Morris and the USMNT have already secured a spot in the coveted Hexagonal round of CONCACAF play for 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying - set to take place in November - and intend make a final push in Hex preparation with two October friendlies. Klinsmann's squad first plays a historic match at Cuba on Friday, October 7 (1:00 p.m. PT / ESPN, Univision). The game at Estadio Pedro Marrero marks only the second visit that the USA has made to Cuba in the last 69 years, having come away with a 1-0 win on September 6, 2008 during the Semifinal Round of Qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Then, on Tuesday, October 11 (5:00 p.m. PT / ESPN, UniMas) the USMNT faces New Zealand at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. in the team's final contest before Hex play.

The top three teams from the Hex automatically advance to the World Cup, while the fourth-place side faces the fifth-place qualifier from the Asian Football Confederation for a spot in Russia.

Morris - a Sounders FC Homegrown Player signed in January -  has 11 career caps for the USMNT and scored against Mexico in a friendly win on April 15, 2015. The Mercer Island native and Stanford product currently holds the Seattle team-lead with 12 goals so far in 2016, the most ever for an American rookie in MLS history.

Lodeiro returns to Uruguay for a home match at Centenario Stadium on Thursday, October 6 at 4:00 p.m. PT followed by a road game at Colombia on Tuesday, October 11 at 1:30 p.m. PT. Uruguay currently leads 2018 FIFA World Cup CONMEBOL play with 16 points (8-5-1), while Brazil, Argentina and Colombia trail closely behind with 15 points apiece. Lodeiro has 49 career international caps, including five appearances so far in 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying. Since signing with Sounders FC on July 26, Lodeiro has three goals and eight assists in 10 matches and was named the Etihad Airlines MLS Player of the Month for August.

Just eight games into the 18-match final CONMEBOL qualifying round between 10 teams, the top four teams in the table advance automatically to the 2018 FIFA World Cup, while the fifth team plays in an inter-confederation playoff against the winner of the Oceania Football Conference for a spot to play in Russia. 

Jones heads into international duty with Trinidad and Tobago as the squad begins its 2017 Caribbean Cup Qualifiers. The Soca Warriors are third-round entrants in the tournament, having received byes for rounds one and two held earlier this year. Playing in Group 4, they face the Dominican Republic on October 5, followed by Martinique on October 11. Winning its group would ensure Trinidad and Tobago qualification to both the 2017 Caribbean Cup and the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Jones has 55 career caps and six international goals, including four strikes in the three 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches in which he has played this year.

Fisher and Lowe both join Jamaica as it also takes part in a Caribbean Cup Qualifier. As the Cup's defending champion, the Reggae Boyz were granted byes for the first two rounds of competition, and make their debut by at Guyana on Tuesday, October 11. The call-up marks the first senior team call-up for Lowe, who is currently on loan with NASL side Minnesota United FC, while Fisher has one previous cap recorded. 

After a 1-0 midweek victory against the Chicago Fire on Wednesday, Sounders FC (12-13-5, 41 points) heads to Vancouver for a nationally-televised Cascadia Cup rivalry match at BC Place. Kickoff on Sunday is set for 5:00 p.m. PT with a national broadcast on FS1, as well as local radio coverage through KIRO Radio 97.3 FM and El Rey 1360 AM. Sounders FC holds sixth place in the Western Conference standings, level with Portland but holding the total-wins tiebreaker for the final spot in the 2016 Audi MLS Cup Playoffs. With four matches remaining in the 2016 regular season, Sounders FC has one game in-hand on all but two teams in the conference. This marks the first time in 2016 that Seattle has been in postseason position.



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