Match Recap

RECAP: Sounders win big in first leg of CCL Semifinals, take two-goal advantage into second match

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The Seattle Sounders defeated New York City FC 3-1 on Wednesday at Lumen Field in the first leg of the Concacaf Champions League Semifinals behind goals from Albert Rusnák, Jordan Morris and Nicolás Lodeiro.

Rusnák scored his first goal for the club on the end of a beautiful build-up in the 16th minute. Morris eventually played a perfectly weighted pass into the path of Rusnák, who one-timed his shot into the far corner.

NYCFC answered in the 27th minute when Taty Castellanos headed a cross back across goal for Thiago Andrade, who poked it home from the doorstep.

Seattle retook the lead seven minutes later, though, when Cristian Roldan dropped a pass back for Morris, who hammered a right-footed one-timer past Sean Johnson.

Roldan nearly added a third in the 64th minute when Raúl Ruidíaz picked him out on a cross, but he lifted his effort over the crossbar.

Lodeiro did find the third in the 68th minute on a penalty after Ruidíaz was fouled and awarded a PK after Video Review.

THREE TAKEAWAYS

Morris magic

Morris continued his strong start to 2022 with his fourth goal in all competitions. He forced an own goal last weekend, which proved to be the winner at Minnesota United, and also assisted on Rusnák’s opener on Wednesday. Things are clicking for the veteran Homegrown as he has fully put his ACL injury last year behind him.

Albert opens his account

Rusnák scored his first goal for the Sounders in his 10th match with the club since joining as a high-profile free agency signing this past offseason. He had come close on several occasions earlier this year and finally found the back of the net at a critical time. He’s an integral component to Seattle’s dominant front six of Ruidíaz, Morris, Lodeiro, Cristian Roldan and João Paulo.

Second leg looms

The Sounders will head east next Wednesday (6 p.m. PT; FS1, TUDN, El Rey 1360 AM) for the crucial second leg at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. Away goals are the first tiebreaker, and if the match ends tied in regulation and even on away goals, the match will go to penalties. Of note, MLS rescheduled both Seattle and New York City’s league matches this weekend, so each side will come into next week’s deciding leg on full rest.

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