The Seattle Sounders are hosting the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday (2 p.m. PT; JOEtv, Prime Video, 950 KJR AM, El Rey 1360 AM | TICKETS) in their second meeting of the 2021 season. Here are three matchups to watch:
Raúl Ruidíaz vs. Oswaldo Alanís
After not scoring last weekend, Ruidíaz will be eager to get back in the goal column against a San Jose defense that is second-worst in the Western Conference. Mexican defender Alanís spearheads Head Coach Matías Almeyda’s three center back system, and he will have his hands full trying to slow down the MLS Golden Boot leader.
Fredy Montero vs. Eric Remedi
Remedi has been one of the best intra-MLS signings of the season so far, helping shore of the middle of San Jose’s midfield. The former Atlanta United man likes to sit deep and help out the center backs by snuffing out any attacks through the middle. How well Montero can drop in and play between the lines will be a major factor in the Sounders’ effectiveness in the final third.
Alex Roldan vs. Cristian Espinoza
After returning from a successful stint with El Salvador during the Concacaf Gold Cup, Roldan will have a strong challenge ahead of him in Espinoza. The 26-year-old Argentine is one of the best pure chance creators in the league because of his pace and ability to get past defenders 1-on-1. Roldan will need to be stout defensively while also forcing Espinoza to remain honest by making timely attacking runs like he has all season.