Seattle Sounders flex ‘unpredictable’ attack in four-goal outburst against Chicago Fire

BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. — One word to summarize the Seattle Sounders’ attack so far in 2019: unpredictable.

The Sounders blitzed the Chicago Fire on Saturday, scoring twice inside 15 minutes for the second straight match. The four-headed attacking monster of Jordan Morris, Nicolás Lodeiro, Víctor Rodríguez and Raúl Ruidíaz all scored in an emphatic 4-2 road win to improve to 3-0-0, the Sounders’ best start in league play since their inaugural season in 2009.

Chicago simply had no answer. When the Fire tried to shut down one player, another one stepped up. It’s an attacking impetus that is ruthless by design and has led to 10 Sounders goals in just three matches.

“We each have our own ways of attacking so maybe it’s hard to focus on [just one of us],” Morris said on Seattle’s front four. “It helps to open up teams a little bit. You’ve got Raúl, who’s great in the box; Nico finding the passes, pulling the strings; Víctor taking people on, and I like to try and get in behind. It’s those different ways of playing that makes [our attack] unpredictable.”

Jordan Morris celebrates his goal against the Fire | USA Today Sports

Things got a little nervy at the end of the match, as the Fire nearly erased a 3-0 deficit, but Ruidíaz’s goal in the 88th minute iced the victory. Ruidíaz has now scored in eight consecutive MLS matches, and his streak of six consecutive regular-season matches breaks a Sounders record that was jointly held by Fredy Montero and Obafemi Martins.

Ruidíaz and Morris lead the Sounders with three goals apiece on the year, with Morris notching his first assist of the campaign on Saturday as well. His blazing speed on the flank is a nightmare matchup for most fullbacks in MLS, and it has been on full display throughout the young season.

“He brings a different side to our attack,” goalkeeper Stefan Frei said of Morris. “The hardest part about him is he has different ways he can beat you. He’s not just a guy who can go in behind and that’s the only thing he can do. He can also hold up the ball, he can shoot from distance, he has a lethal foot. He’s quite crafty on the ball at times too. It’s trying to be unpredictable as individual players, but also as a squad. “

The Sounders will enjoy a week off during the upcoming FIFA international break before returning to MLS action on Saturday, March 30 (7 p.m. PT; JOEtv, YouTube TV, 950 KJR AM, El Rey 1360 AM) at the Vancouver Whitecaps.

“The atmosphere [with the locker room] is great,” said Morris. “Guys are working really hard. There’s a belief that this team can do really good things.”