SEATTLE, WASH. – Seattle Sounders FC opened its 2016 season on Tuesday night in the Knockout Round of the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League, securing a 2-2 draw with reigning champion Club America in the first leg of the Quarterfinals. In front of a capacity crowd of 42,836 at CenturyLink Field – a club record for a CONCACAF Champions League match – Sounders FC forward Clint Dempsey recorded goals on either side of halftime to help secure a draw for the Rave Green. Seattle now prepares to travel to Mexico City for the return leg of the two-match aggregate series, with the second contest slated for Wednesday, March 2 at Estadio Azteca (5:00 p.m. PT / FOX Sports 2, Univision, KIRO Radio 97.3 FM).
A torrid first-half gave way to a frantic finish at the end of the first period, as Dempsey fired Seattle into the lead with a stunning free kick from roughly 30 yards outside of America’s area. Sounders FC’s lead lasted less than a minute, as Club America forward Darwin Quintero sprung the offside trap at the other end of the field, firing a shot past Stefan Frei to level the score at one apiece heading into the break.
Seattle wasted little time in reestablishing its lead, as Dempsey found the end of an Andreas Ivanschitz corner kick in the 52nd minute of play, as the Sounders FC Designated Player rose to head home the ball at Hugo Gonzalez’s far post. With his brace, Dempsey becomes the fifth player in club history to record two goals in one CONCACAF Champions League match. The other players with two-goal efforts are Fredy Montero, Osvaldo Alonso, Mike Fucito and Lamar Neagle. Andreas Ivanschitz recorded an assist on Dempsey’s second goal in his SCCL debut.
Unfortunately for the Rave Green, Club America secured another critical away goal in the 70th minute of play, with Oribe Peralta receiving left-footed service from Rubens Sambueza and knocking the ball into the back of Frei's net with an out-stretched right foot.
Tonight’s fixture marked the professional debut for Homegrown Player Jordan Morris, who started at forward in 85 minutes of action. It was also the Sounders FC debut for defender Joevin Jones, who played a full 90 minutes at leftback after being acquired from Chicago in the offseason. Sounders FC is now 14-12-5 all-time in Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League play. Tonight’s result is the club’s first home draw in tournament history, with the Rave Green posting a 10-5-1 record at CenturyLink Field, including a 7-3-1 record since 2011.
Seattle Sounders FC 2 – Club America 2
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Venue: Xbox Pitch at CenturyLink Field
Referee: Oscar Reyna
Assistants: Ronaldo De La Cruz, Rene Ocha
Fourth Official: Jonathan Polanco
Weather: 52 degrees and clear
SEA – Clint Dempsey 44’
AME – Carlos Quintero (Rubens Sambueza) 45’
SEA – Clint Dempsey (Andreas Ivanschitz) 52’
AME – Oribe Peralta (Rubens Sambueza) 70’
AME – Rubens Sambueza (caution) 58’
SEA – Osvaldo Alonso (caution) 62’
SEA –Andreas Ivanschitz (caution) 90’+1’
AME – Pablo Aguilar (caution) 90’+2’
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC – Stefan Frei; Tyrone Mears, Brad Evans – captain, Chad Marshall, Joevin Jones; Erik Friberg (Cristian Roldan 74’), Osvaldo Alonso, Andreas Ivanschitz; Jordan Morris (Darwin Jones 85’), Nelson Valdez (Aaron Kovar 74’), Clint Dempsey
Substitutes not used: Tyler Miller, Nathan Sturgis, Zach Scott, Oniel Fisher
Total shots: 11 (Dempsey, 3)
Shots on goal: 3 (Dempsey, 2)
Fouls: 12 (Valdez, 3)
Offside: 1 (Valdez, 1)
Corner-kicks: 5 (Ivanschitz, 5)
Saves: 4 (Frei, 4)
Club America – Hugo Gonzalez; Paolo Goltz, Miguel Samudio, Pablo Aguilar, Paul Aguilar; Osvaldo Martinez, Rubens Sambueza – captain, Brian Lozano (Andres Andrade 61’); Oribe Peralta, Darwin Quintero (Osmar Mares 87’)
Substitutes not used: Luis Pineda, Erik Pimentel, Ventura Alvarado, Francisco Rivera, Jesus Moreno
Total shots: 12 (Quintero, 3)
Shots on goal: 6 (Quintero/Peralta, 2)
Fouls: 26 (Aguilar, 7)
Offside: 4 (Quintero/Peralta, 2)
Corner-kicks: 2 (Martinez/Sambueza, 2)
Saves: 1 (Gonzalez, 1)
- After tonight’s match, Sounders is now 14-12-5 all-time in SCCL play. Tonight’s result is the club’s first home draw in tournament history, with the Rave Green posting a 10-5-1 record at CenturyLink Field, including a 7-3-1 record since 2011.
- Clint Dempsey recorded goals in the 44th and 52nd minute in his first SCCL match with Sounders FC. He became the fifth player in club history to record a brace in a single SCCL match, and the first to do so in his tournament debut. The other players with two-goal efforts were Fredy Montero, Osvaldo Alonso, Mike Fucito and Lamar Neagle. Andreas Ivanschitz recorded an assist on Dempsey’s second goal in his SCCL debut.
- Tonight’s fixture marked the professional debut for Homegrown Player Jordan Morris, who started at forward in 85 minutes of action. It was also the team debut for defender Joevin Jones, who played a full 90 minutes at leftback.
- By allowing two goals, Sounders FC snapped its streak of nine consecutive matches of allowing one goal or fewer in SCCL play.
- Dating back to last season’s MLS Cup Playoffs, Sounders FC has scored from a set piece in each of its past four goals across all competitions. Starting with Dempsey’s game-winning free kick against FC Dallas in the First Leg of the Western Conference Knockout Round, defender Chad Marshall added a header on a goal late in the Second Leg against Dallas. Tonight, Dempsey scored on a free kick in the first half and tallied another score off an Ivanschitz corner.
- Sounders FC suffered 26 fouls in tonight’s contest, which ties the club record across all competitions.
- Tonight’s attendance of 42,836 is the largest crowd in club history for an SCCL match.