TUKWILA, Wash. – Seattle Sounders defender and captain Brad Evans will watch from the stands when the Sounders take on Columbus Crew SC on Saturday (1 p.m. PT; JoeTV, ROOT Sports (Outside Seattle)/KIRO 97.3 FM, El Rey 1360 AM) after he picked up a red card and a one-game suspension last weekend for dissent.
With defender Román Torres still rehabbing his ACL injury, veteran defender Zach Scott will step in for the suspended captain against Columbus. Scott, 35, started two games last month while Evans nursed a separated shoulder, giving him at least three appearances in each of his eight seasons with the Sounders in their MLS era.
And on Saturday he’ll add yet another, his 336th appearance for the Sounders across all leagues and competitions.
“He’s a guy you know you can rely upon and he’s been that since day one,” Schmid told reporters on Thursday. “He’s still a competitor.”
Fellow defender Tyrone Mears echoed Schmid’s statements when asked what it will be like to play with Scott instead of Evans on the back line.
“You know what you get with Zach,” Mears said. “He’s going to compete and fight until the end, so it’s a good player to come in.”
Dempsey and Valdez Progressing; Morris Takes Knock
Designated Players Clint Dempsey and Nelson Valdez both missed last weekend’s match at Colorado as a precautionary measure due to injury, but they worked out fully with the team on Thursday and the club is still hopeful they can suit up on Saturday.
Schmid was tight-lipped about their exact status but indicated they may be available to play.
“They were able to go through training,” Schmid said, “so I’ll have a better idea once I talk to them.”
Homegrown forward Jordan Morris left training early on Thursday with what looked like a back strain. The injury concern comes at a bad time for Morris after scoring two goals in the team’s last two matches.
Schmid, however, was confident that the tweak won’t affect Morris’ availability for Saturday. “He was just a little bit tight so we told him just to go in,” he said.
“Today is Thursday, we feel he’ll be fine by Saturday.”