First-half goal barrage
The Sounders exploded to the tune of five goals in the opening 33 minutes of play. Raúl Ruidíaz scored twice, and Jordan Morris, Kelvin Leerdam and Joevin Jones added one goal apiece to set a Sounders record (and tie an MLS record) for most goals in a single half. Seattle also scored the quintet quicker than any other team in league history.
Seven in Seattle
The Sounders also set an MLS-era club record for most goals in a match with seven on Thursday, which tied for second-most in MLS history. Only the 1998 LA Galaxy scored more when they defeated the Dallas Burn 8-1.
Morris the provider
Morris opened the scoring on a brilliant half-field run just four minutes into Thursday’s match, but it was his three assists that stole the show. None was better than his sublime through ball to Ruidíaz for Seattle’s fifth goal. As you can see in the video below, Morris is going away from goal, yet not only does he see the space in behind San Jose’s defense for Ruidíaz to run into, he plays a perfectly weighted pass that catches Ruidíaz in stride.
The list of players capable of producing a pass like that is not long, and for someone who’s established himself as an elite winger over the past 18 months, Morris does not get enough credit for how much his passing and playmaking has improved.
Kelvin can’t stop scoring
Leerdam scored his third goal in his last four starts and is currently the highest-scoring defender in MLS this season. The 30-year-old right back also chipped in a beautiful assist to João Paulo on Thursday, and Leerdam now has three goals and two assists in just 756 minutes. For reference, he had five goals in two assists in 29 matches last season.
Head Coach Brian Schmetzer’s 4-2-3-1 formation requires fullbacks to get forward, and Leerdam, and the Sounders, are reaping the benefits.
2017 JJ is back
Schmetzer started Jones on the right wing on Thursday, rather than where he’s usually deployed at left back, and did it ever pay off. Schmetzer moved Cristian Roldan from the wing to his more natural center mid position and let Jones go to work on the flank. All he did was record a brace to score his first goal for Seattle since re-joining the club after an 18-month stint in Germany and set up two others. He looked every bit as dangerous offensively as he did in 2017, when he recorded an eye-popping 11 assists.