SEATTLE, WASH. - Sounders FC secured its passage to the Quarterfinal Round of the 2018 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League, courtesy of a second-half offensive explosion that saw Will Bruin, Nicolás Lodeiro, Chad Marshall and new signing Magnus Wolff Eikrem find the back of the net. With tonight's result, the Rave Green advance to the Quarterfinal Round of North America's premier club soccer competition for the fourth time in club history, with a marquee matchup against Mexican powerhouse Chivas Guadalajara looming on the horizon. Seattle is set to host the first match of the two-legged series at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday, March 7 (7:00 p.m. PT / Univision Deportes Network, Go90, SoundersFC.com, El Rey 1360 AM). The return leg is set for Wednesday, March 14 in Guadalajara at Estadio Akron. Prior to facing the Liga MX side, Seattle opens its 2018 MLS home slate on Sunday, March 4 versus expansion side LAFC. Kickoff for that contest at CenturyLink Field is slated for 2:00 p.m. PT, with broadcast coverage being provided by ESPN, ESPN Deportes, 950 KJR AM and El Rey 1360 AM.
The Chivas home match is included as the 19th game in 2018 Sounders FC Season Ticket Member packages. Sounders FC Season Ticket Members have the opportunity to purchase additional tickets for the March 7 showdown against one of Liga MX's most prominent teams from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. PT on Friday, March 2. The public on-sale is set for Friday at 11:00 a.m. PT via SoundersFC.com or by calling 877-MLS-GOAL. The Chivas series is Seattle's seventh overall test against Mexican opposition, having previously played Monterrey in 2010 and 2011, Santos Laguna in 2012 and 2013, Tigres UANL in 2013, in addition to Club América in 2016. While Sounders FC has played Chivas in a friendly match in 2010, the two sides have not met previously in competitive play.
Bruin broke the scoreless deadlock early in the second half, overturning Santa Tecla's first leg lead by bagging his first goal of 2018 in competitive play. His strike came in the 46th minute, with Lodeiro providing the assist. Wolff Eikrem made his Seattle debut as a halftime substitute after joining the club as a Targeted Allocation Money signing in the offseason, and wasted little time in initiating the attack that resulted in Bruin's goal.
Lodeiro double his side's advantage in the 69th minute, combining with Dempsey to make the score 2-0. The Uruguyan playmaker ran onto a Dempsey cross, heading the ball toward Santa Tecla's far post.
Marshall struck in the 81st minute with a header to make it 3-0, and Wolff Eikrem recorded the exclamation point two minutes later, netting a goal to match his assist to confirm a memorable debut. Dempsey recorded his second assist on the strike.
Sounders FC season tickets are still available, including new 2018 seating options in the 300 level, with full information available at SoundersFC.com or by calling 877-MLS-GOAL. For complete information, details and pricing on 2018 Sounders FC season tickets, fans should call 877-MLS-GOAL or email Sales@SoundersFC.com. Complete information on all Sounders FC ticket packages can be found at SoundersFC.com/Tickets. Single-match tickets are available for all 17 MLS home matches and the club's Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League matchup on March 4 vs. Chivas. Seating for all games is subject to availability at time of purchase. Single-match tickets can be purchased via the following link: SoundersFC.com/Tickets/Single-Match-Tickets.
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Jordan McCrary, Chad Marshall, Tony Alfaro (Magnus Wolff Eikrem HT), Nouhou; Gustav Svensson, Cristian Roldan, Nicolás Lodeiro - captain, Clint Dempsey (Henry Wingo 87'), Harry Shipp (Lamar Neagle 78'); Will Bruin
Substitutes not used: Bryan Meredith, Alex Roldan, Jordy Delem, Waylon Francis
Santa Tecla FC - Joel Almeida; Roberto Dominguez, Juan Barahona, Yosimar Quinones; Bryan Tamacas (Liber Quinones 74'), Gerson Mayen, Fernando Quintanilla (Gilberto Baires 64'), Marlon Cornejo (William Canales 72'); Aldair Rivera, Ricardinho, Wilma Torres
Substitutes not used: Hector Ramirez, Andres Flores Jaco, Alexander Mendoza, Harold Alas
- With the win, Sounders FC advances to the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League Quarterfinals for the fourth time, and now faces storied Mexican club Chivas Guadalajara for a chance at the club's second appearance in the Semifinal Round. The first leg is being held in Seattle on Wednesday, March 7, with the return leg at Estadio Akron on Wednesday, March 14.
- Thursday marked the Sounders FC debut for midfielder Magnus Wolff Eikrem, who came on as a halftime substitute. The Norwegian international initiated the attack on Will Bruin's goal in the 46th minute, before opening his Sounders FC account in the 83rd minute to seal the match.
- Nicolás Lodeiro continued his strong form to start the 2018 campaign, tallying a goal and two assists. The Uruguayan international finishes the Round of 16 matchup with Santa Tecla with two goals and two assists, after scoring from 40 yards out in the first leg.
- Clint Dempsey made his 2018 debut on Thursday evening and recorded two assists, giving him two goals and two assists in three career SCCL appearances for Sounders FC.
- Stefan Frei recorded one save in his first shutout of the 2018 campaign, his second career clean sheet in the SCCL for Sounders FC.