The Seattle Sounders host Honduran powerhouse C.D. Olimpia in Leg Two of their Round of 16 tilt in the Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League on Thursday, February 27. Here’s everything you need to know:
WHEN AND WHERE: Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. PT at CenturyLink Field.
WHERE TO WATCH: The match will be televised on FOX Sports 2.
RECORDS AND STANDINGS: Sounders: First MLS match is on Sunday, March 1, Olimpia: 5-2-2 (17 points, 3rd in Liga Nacional de Honduras)
ALL-TIME HISTORY: The Sounders are 16-15-7 all-time in Concacaf Champions League play, including a 1-1-1 all-time record against C.D. Olimpia.
PREVIOUS MEETING: The Sounders jumped out to a 2-0 lead over Olimpia in Leg One of the series, courtesy of a 6th minute goal from João Paulo on his debut and a second-half strike from Jordan Morris. The hosts clawed back with a brace from Yustin Arboleda, leveling the score on aggregate after the first leg in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.
DREAM DEBUT: There was plenty of excitement surrounding João Paulo entering his first official match with the club. Seattle’s new Brazilian Designated Player lived up to the hype, heading Seattle into the lead just six minutes into his debut. Beyond his goal, the talented midfielder showcased a brilliant range of passing and ability to contribute on both sides of the ball.
THE MERCER ISLAND MAGICIAN: Morris picked up right where he left off in the 2019 season, tallying a goal and an assist in the 2-2 draw at Olimpia. Moreover, it marked his first foray into CCL since he suffered a season-ending ACL injury in 2018.
HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF: These two sides met in the 2015 group stage of CCL, with the match ending in a benches-clearing brawl in the 97th minute. The rivalry was renewed in the 24th minute on Thursday night as Arboleda landed an aerial kick on goalkeeper Stefan Frei’s rib cage during a set piece.
AWAY GOALS: Although the team will be disappointed they didn’t secure a win in Leg One, they enter the decisive second match with a distinct advantage, as away goals serve as the first tiebreaker in the CCL knockout rounds.
YEIMARREAGA: Leg One also marked the debut of Seattle’s new center back partnership, Yeimar Gómez Andrade and Xavier Arreaga. Although he had limited time to get acclimated to the group, Gómez Andrade showed flashes of dominance, while Arreaga once again showed off his class as a ball-playing center back.
HOME SWEET HOME: Leg Two on Thursday marks the first match to be played at CenturyLink Field since the Seattle Sounders won the 2019 MLS Cup over Toronto FC on November 10, 2019. A fortress for the Rave Green, the Sounders have not lost at CenturyLink Field in CCL play since they fell 1-0 to Santos Laguna on April 2, 2013.
KEY PLAYERS MISSING: Olimpia will be without the services of two starting defenders, captain Ever Alvarado and center back Jonathon Paz, on Thursday. Both players suffered injuries during Olimpia's league match against Marathon on Sunday.