Sigi Schmid

Mistakes doom Seattle Sounders in loss at Real Salt Lake

Mistakes at the end of the first half and the second half doomed an otherwise solid showing in the first road game of the season for the Seattle Sounders on Saturday.

Seattle coughed up a goal in the 42nd minute and the 85th in the 2-1 loss to Real Salt Lake, erasing a rare goal in the first half from midfielder Osvaldo Alonso and giving head coach Sigi Schmid cause for concern less than a month into the new season.

“It was just a disappointing result for us,” Schmid said. “We gave up a goal late in the first half and late in the second half, and individual mistakes caused the goals. When you make mistakes like that, you’re going to lose games.”

RSL midfielder Sunny scored on a wide-open header off a corner kick in the waning minutes of the first half and defender Jamison Olave leapt for the winning header in front of goalkeeper Tyler Miller in the final minutes of the match at Rio Tinto Stadium. Aside from those mistakes, the Sounders looked up for the challenge of pulling a rare road point out of Rio Tinto, where they have now lost five straight games.

“Outside of that, I thought we played well …” Schmid said. “I thought we showed good possession, we brought the ball forward, we got into good attacking areas, we were dangerous, we forced [Real Salt goalkeeper Nick Rimando] into a couple good saves. I’m just disappointed because you can’t make errors like that and expect to win.”

Despite the final scoreline, the Sounders controlled the tempo for much of the first half and threatened to score on numerous occasions before Sunny’s header sent the teams into the break at 1-1.

“I was very happy with how we played on the road,” Schmid said. “We were expecting them to take the game to us a little bit more and they didn’t take the game to us at all in the first half.”

The loss marks just the second time in the club’s MLS history that the Sounders are 0-2 after the first two games of the season. The same happened in 2011 when they lost a home opener to the LA Galaxy and then a road game at the New York Red Bulls the next week. The team ultimately finished second in the Western Conference that season.

“Who wants to be 0-2 after two weeks?” Schmid said. “Obviously you’d rather be 2-0, but it is what it is. We’ve got to pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off and go forward, and play. We’re not going to go home and feel sorry for ourselves, we gotta get up and play.”

Miller made his MLS debut in the loss and finished with two saves, but he was focused on the late goal to Olave which ultimately sealed the team's fate.

"I'm obviously disappointed with how it went," he said. "I have to do better on the second goal, and get that ball out of there. Overall I felt like I had a good game, I just have to learn from mistakes and move forward."

Schmid did not offer any updates on the status of the team’s growing list of injured players, which now includes midfielder Erik Friberg and forward Jordan Morris. Both players were pulled from the game after suffering an injury. Friberg went down in the first half with an apparent left knee injury and Morris left the game after colliding head-to-head with RSL defender Chris Wingert in the second half.

Goalkeeper Stefan Frei [elbow inflammation] also missed the game, as did captain Brad Evans [shoulder].

“I think we could have won today,” Schmid said. “We had all the makings of being able to win the game today, but again, you gotta play mistake-free to win.”



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