Sounders halt red-hot Chicharito and LA Galaxy with 3-0 win

Seattle Sounders FC MLS Galaxy

Chicharito has been red-hot to begin this MLS season, but he was put to a stop by the Seattle Sounders on Sunday night. The Mexican international saw his goal-scoring streak end in Week 3. The Sounders, on the other hand, picked up a massive three points with three goals against the LA Galaxy.

Raul Ruidíaz scored two of those goals to propel Seattle to victory. His first goal came off an assist from Brad Smith in the 20th minute. Smith scored a goal of his own in the 23rd minute, doubling the lead and stunning Greg Vanney and the Galaxy. Smith’s goal marked back-to-back games with the Australian on the scoresheet.

Ruidíaz scored again in second-half stoppage time. Jimmy Medranda, who was acquired last year in a trade with Nashville, assisted the Peruvian striker.

Even more important than the goals for Seattle was the clean sheet. Stefan Frei recorded his 84th clean sheet in MLS, moving him to fourth in the all-time MLS rankings. Brian Schmetzer, Sounders head coach, has been tinkering with lineups this year, but has kept his formation the same: rolling with a five-man backline.

The formation gives Smith and right back Alex Roldan the freedom to move up the flanks.

“The good thing is we’re getting good results and we can only get better,” Smith said post-game. “We’re still learning the formation. That’s a positive. We can’t wait to keep this run going and keep improving on these performances.”

Schmetzer said that the focus in practice this week — which contributed to Seattle’s success — was sticking with the plan against Chicharito.

“We worked all week on preventing service to Chicharito,” Schmetzer said. “Where he’s really dangerous is when the Galaxy get closer to the end line, his movement in the box is so good…We prevented service to him.”

Three Takeaways from Sounders vs. Galaxy

  1. Don’t dwell, Chicharito: Seattle is a good team and the defense has proven in the first three matches to be tough. Chicharito shouldn’t dwell on the performance too much. He’ll be back to scoring goals and giving the Galaxy fans something to cheer about.
  2. Brad Smith? Bald Power: Brad Smith has been the unlikely hero of the last two Sounders matches. He tied things up in Los Angeles against LAFC, scored again at home and has been sturdy on defense. Smith had a rough campaign last year. Schmetzer found a way to get both him and Nouhou on the pitch together — and it’s been a perfect pairing.
  3. Put some respect on Will Bruin’s name: Imagine tearing your ACL in your early 30s and coming back the way Will Bruin has for the Sounders. Leading the team with two assists, the forward isn’t just scoring goals but providing them. Bruin is filling in for the injured Jordan Morris, and he’s doing a great job for Seattle. Whether he comes off the bench as a sub or starts, Bruin has earned plenty of respect around the league.

What’s Next for the Sounders?

It’s rivalry week. The Sounders will be taking on the Portland Timbers — who lost 4-1 to FC Dallas last weekend — on Sunday, May 9. The match will begin at 3 p.m. ET/12 p.m. PT, airing on FS1.


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