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A Fabulous Final As The Sounders Win Their First US Open Cup

All the hype & all the bantering between Kevin Payne of DC United & Adrian Hanauer of the Sounders was definitely worth the price of admission for this ticket as the up & comers in the Seattle Sounders took on the plentiful DC United at RFK Stadium. Many of you are well aware of the on going squabble thru the press and on the internet of who should’ve really hosted the cup final, a loud and boisterous Qwest Field or the cauldron of RFK.

Well regardless of where the final was going to be I have to say that we were all very happy of what we saw tonight on Fox Soccer Channel. This was two teams playing very strong defense every single time you saw a shot on goal or when possession changed hands at midfield. But you could see two distinctive different styles of play by both sides. DC United bringing up the ball were going for either set pieces to get their goals as well as taking long shots from outside the box. Meanwhile the Sounders were actually going along with the run of play and keeping possession. But you have to agree that the goalkeeping of Josh Wicks & Kasey Keller was spectacular in the nets to keep their respective sides in the game.

But the real problem for the DC United defense was young Colombian superstar Freddy Montero as he found ways to pick apart the United defense, but just couldn’t finish off his chances to get the Sounders that lead. In the 67th minute the Sounders would find pay dirt as they attacked the DC United net. Freddie Ljungberg would be on the far side of the field and he ripped a shot that was stopped by Wicks, but left a big rebound in front for Montero who smacks it in the net for the first goal of the match. What a great moment for the Sounders with their fans on the road at RFK as well as those back in Seattle who were celebrating, till an old and familiar foe did something rash.

After giving up the goal DC keeper Josh Wicks that use to play for the Portland Timbers of the USL-1st Division got up off the ground walked towards Montero and stomped on his stomach in anger. What happened a couple of days ago between Marc Burch & Wicks on the road in Chicago during match play sadly came back to bite him in the rear and Alex Prus after consulting his fourth official Andrew Chapin if he saw anything, walked back towards the DC net. In the 69th minute he pulled out of his back pocket the red card and Wicks exploded again. His teammates ushered him to leave the field before a fine and suspension could be issued.

Down a man and Tom Sohen forced to sub out one of his dangerous midfielders in Christian Gomez for backup keeper Milos Kocic to try and keep the deficit to one, would surrender a second goal in the 86th minute. Mr. US Open Cup Sebastien LeToux at the near side would shake off his defender and advance towards goal. A quick cross to a wide open Roger Levesque and it was two goals to nil for the Sounders and a possible dagger in the net as DC United was ready to bite the dust. Yet they would pull one back in the 89th with Clyde Simms scoring a deflection off the Sounders wall on a free kick & five minutes of stoppage time wouldn’t be enough to get into extra time as the Seattle Sounders won their first Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Championship on the road.

This was the best final that I have seen in a good long while & even though last years final showed a resilient Charleston Battery side that would never quit, exposed some holes on the DC defense and never got that second equalizer. On this night the Sounders were able to get thru. Once Montero put in that rebound chance you had a feeling this was going to be a spectacular fight to the finish, unfortunately the actions of Josh Wicks turned that idea around.

Let me make a quick observation right now. My good friend Max Bretos who has done a great job announcing MLS matches as well as other international matches on the channel said that the Sounders are the second expansion side to win the US Open Cup since the Chicago Fire in 1998. I have to slightly disagree with him, this might be considered legally an expansion side, but this club was originally a member of the USL-1st Division. They got promoted to MLS and now they are being rewarded with the fruits of their labor from a USL-1st powerhouse to an MLS side with their first trophy in US Open Cup Play.

Congratulations Seattle, you got your first title in Open Cup play and continued success in MLS.

Update: Tuesday, September 8th

For a certain poster who thought Josh Wicks stomping was an accident and is trying to tell all of us that he was trying to get to his far post and never touched Freddy Montero. Don Ruiz from The Olympian was at training when he asked Montero where did Wicks get him. “Montero answered by rolling up the right leg of his practice shorts.” Reported Ruiz ” The exact spot remained clearly marked by two blood-red scrapes along his thigh- one about 4 to 5 inches long, the other 2 to 3 inches – both looking as bright as if they had been applied by a crimson felt marker.

Freddy Montero was answering questions with the help of Taylor Graham who was interpreting. “From my side, I was trying to score a goal. I had a couple of chances and was just trying to put this away.” Said Montero “I scored the goal, I was really happy, and I was trying to get up. All of a sudden, I felt his studs in my thigh. I didn’t understand why it happened.”

Well Freddy I can tell you why, Josh Wicks still has some Portland Timbers blood in him and he is aware of that Northwest Rivalry between Seattle & Portland during the days of the A-League & USL-1st Division. So for that certain poster that assumes Montero did a dive job & pretended he got stomped I can live the link and you can keep on defending Josh Wicks for no reason.

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  1. Daniel Feuerstein

    September 5, 2009 at 3:34 am

    Todd said: I was at the game, on the northern side near that goal and was quite close. He was jumping over montero to get to his goal post.

    Todd, if your just saying all this or defending Wicks because you hate Freddy Montero, then just say so. Because no matter how much you are defending Wicks, you didn’t have 3 different camera angles showing the intent by Wicks of stomping on Montero & he was no where near that far post.

    If you think Freddy is a diver fine, if you hate the Sounders fans fine. But stop this nonsense that Wicks was going to his goal post as he accidentally got Montero. That was no accident. Wicks intentionally stomped on Montero. I have the tape & I can watch it over & over & over again. You were too far away to see what happened.

    Your a good supporter of the US Open Cup Todd, but stop acting like a blind fool and admit you are wrong defending Wicks.

  2. Seybold

    September 5, 2009 at 3:22 am

    Charles says:
    “BTW, Sounders and Timbers is a made up rivalry compared to the Whitecaps. I still hate 80s Whitecaps players.”

    C’mon Charles. Let it go. I seem to recall at least one Whitecaps player in one match making a tackle that wasn’t studs-up. And just imagine how much fun it’s gonna be to have Lenarduzzi back in Seattle, losing another match! Badly as usual.

    And laugh and point at the BC license plates after the usual 4-1.

  3. soccer goals

    September 4, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    The Sounders were worthy of the victory.

  4. Charles

    September 4, 2009 at 1:36 pm

    My guess, is this isn’ t the first time that Wicks has had trouble is it ?

    You want annoying Sounders fans !?!
    Sounders have another 5,000 ticket reservations for next year and they have NOT asked the season ticket holders if they want more for next year. My guess is they will open up more seats ( the Hawks Nest hold 3k ),as even if they have a renewal rate of only 90%, they will still have sold out the 32.5k lower bowl at Qwest. The playoff demand ( providing they hang on ) is going to be interesting.
    Lets all pray for the Sounders making the MLS Cup, so we can see for the third time what a real sell out ( 70k ) looks like.

    BTW, Sounders and Timbers is a made up rivalry compared to the Whitecaps.
    I still hate 80s Whitecaps players.

    • Rex

      September 4, 2009 at 5:32 pm

      MLS playoffs could be exciting with all the big brands that will be involved. Galaxy, Seattle, Chicago, Houston. Just think if the West first round is Galaxy/Chivas, Seattle/Houston. We are talking 4 games in two weeks all with 30,000+ attendance.

      MLS wet dream would be:




  5. Jayoh

    September 4, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Good one Todd…Good one…way to keep it classy.

    • todd

      September 4, 2009 at 2:27 pm

      I was sitting on the side the camera didn’t show. I know what I saw.

      and I am keeping it classy. If it was any major sport in the US Montero’s domestic abuse scandal would have kept him from playing the rest of the season.

  6. todd

    September 4, 2009 at 10:09 am

    have ya’ll not watched any soccer? ever? most goalies I see get scored on go directly to the goal posts and kick their cleats/beat their hands/adjustit/grabtheirwaterbottle. Thats all wicks was doing.

    I was at the game, on the northern side near that goal and was quite close. He was jumping over montero to get to his goal post.

    I’m glad montero is out of here after this season, he is a wife-beating shithead who dives more than blanco, he is not needed in this league.

  7. Seybold

    September 4, 2009 at 1:02 am

    There is no reason for a keeper to ever walk right by a player who just scored a goal and is on the ground. There’s 8 yards of space between the posts. He deserved a red card for abject stupidity if nothing else.

    That said I think Daniel is right–that alone should give you a flavor of what the Seattle-Portland rivalry will be (or rather already is) like, along with the infamous “timber” goal celebration from the cup tie.

    Much respect to DC United–it was especially sweet to win the the first trophy against a side with so many of them already. I honestly didn’t think we had much chance playing on the road at RFK.

  8. Chris

    September 3, 2009 at 6:38 pm

    It’s nice that Seattle fans are so excited because while it lasts it brings money to the league, but god they are annoying.

  9. Daniel Feuerstein

    September 3, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    Doo: And this comment means what exactly?

  10. Doo

    September 3, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    hahaha u will not get off USL’s dick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. Scott

    September 3, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    todd, you can clearly see in the replay that Wicks looks down and stomps on Montero’s hand. It was a very stupid thing to do as it cost DC any real chance at equalizing in that match. As a DC fan, there is nothing to be said to defend that action. Wicks should be benched until he gets his head on straight.

  12. Charles

    September 3, 2009 at 4:39 pm

    Why was Wick’s “hopping” over Montero again ? The goal had already been scored.
    Kartik is correct in saying the Sounders have done well in this tourney many times. Beating MLS defending champs, crushing other teams, etc.
    We have been lucky as fans for 30+ years now.
    Don’t be bitter that Seattle has surpassed every team in the stands and now on the field….it is good for soccer in the US to have another strong team and set the bar much higher for revenue.
    When you hear the boos Wicks gets in Seattle for the rest of his life, be more annoyed with Seattle fans.

    Kartik you rock. Noone knows more about the game in the world, because you are NOT just Europe focused.
    You have surpassed Oliver Tse, as my new icon.

  13. Daniel Feuerstein

    September 3, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Todd I will agree with you that RFK wasn’t a dead stadium last nigt and if they would remove that Vokswagon garage and take out that 3B dugout, then they could bring back the endzone stands.

    To Walter, there is a reason why the upper deck in DC is closed. They don’t own the stadium and they will lose more money if they opened the upper deck. Understand this very carefully please. I am happy to see Seattle come into the league and you guys supporting your side at Qwest field, but your ownership group has the Seahawks owner & all the money that’s going into their pockets doesn’t go to anyone else. Not a single penny is going into the pockets of another division who runs Qwest Field, the Sounders & Seahawks gets the money. You are in year one of MLS while many in USL-1st. Stop sounding like you & your friends have been doing this in MLS for a long time, because you haven’t. As a Metro/RBNY supporter, we’ve had many issues at Giants Stadium with their gorilla security guards kicking out my fellow supporters of the ESC for no reason. Congratulations winning the US Open Cup, but understand this, you and some of your friends have gone over board.

    Back to you Todd. What I will go against you on are the actions of Josh Wicks after Montero scored that goal. That was no accident. That was very intentional & Wicks meant to do it. I don’t care what you say, everyone who has written about the final saw the same thing that I saw. Wicks still has some Portland Timbers blood in him and at the same time he meant to leave a mark on Montero Intentionally or not. His stomping action had purpose & there for he costed DC United a quick chance to equalize the match 11 V 11.

    Please don’t defend the guy as what we saw on the highlights in Chicago with Wicks & Marc Burch having a spat, that could’ve become much worse. Wicks needs some counciling and sorry to say that you defending him is wrong right now. Please don’t tell me because I’m a NY fan I wouldn’t do the same thing, because if Coundoul or Cepero did the same thing like Wicks did, I would be going against them as well.

  14. Jayoh

    September 3, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    While I’ll give you some sounders fans have no clue about the history of the game…I must say I’m sooo tired of people getting all pissy about people getting excited about their team, get over it football in Seattle is huge…the people out here are learning the game, at first I was kind of annoyed that so many people were coming out to these games having absolutely no clue about basic tenets such as offsides and what should constitute a card, but you know for the first time ever in seattle many people are coming to football in droves and the interest in the game is ever growing, these people are learning the game, they are becoming impassioned fans, that I hope will stick with the team no matter how well or poor the team performs…the fact that people get excited about football is a good thing, so give up the self righteous tones that I see on the comments sections of so many blogs, just because you’ve been a fan for years and years doesn’t mean you weren’t at the same ignorant place many people began at when they first started loving the game. Give it up, the cup was an amazing game, and yes Todd the sounders were the better team, get over it.

    • todd

      September 3, 2009 at 3:52 pm

      jayoh, my comments have nothing to do with the casual fan embracing soccer in the pacific northwest, I am extremely happy that the Sounders have found themselves in a perfect storm of a situation, and I understand its great for the league and soccer in general in this country (your use of ‘football’ is far more patronizing and self-righteous than anything in my initial comment).

      My issue is with impassioned Sounders fans acting like they deserve things and acting like they are better than other fans in the league. If you have any appreciation for MLS and soccer in the states in the past decade, you would revere DC United and their supporters.

      I’m a Dynamo fan myself, so I went to the US Open Cup impartially. The Wicks red card was bullshit, and there was a clear foul of the defender on the second Sounders goal. Seattle was the better side only because Fred and Moreno apparently didn’t feel like playing.

  15. todd

    September 3, 2009 at 2:07 pm

    im so sick and tired of Sounders new jacks having absolutely no understanding of the history of MLS and having no respect for the realities of the league.

    its good that they’ll be in the CCCCL since they’ll drum up some interest, thats about the only nice thing I can say.

  16. walter

    September 3, 2009 at 1:44 pm

    If you have not experienced soccer in Seattle you are missing a great atmosphere. The powers that be made a mistake having their showpiece US Open Cup hhosted in a dead stadium with 17000 fans. Seattle would have tripled. that number. Come on over and watch the MLS championship game.
    Imagine how good the Sounders will be as they continue to learn to play together. Keller is a great one – local to Seattle. His leadership combined with great coaching puts the new MLS team on the world stage in less than a year..

    • todd

      September 3, 2009 at 1:59 pm

      were you at the game? no? so how the f’ can you say the stadium was dead?

      Wicks jumped over montero to get to the goal post , freddys hand might of been there, but it wasnt intentional, the red card was rewarded after Ljungberg bitched and moaned at the official (with more than enough yelling/cursing that he should have also been issued a card) it was also well after the ref had done any talking, it was total reactionary bullshit.

      the second seattle goal should have been disallowed, the guy took down the DC united defender in a manner that could not have been legal.

  17. Scott

    September 3, 2009 at 1:41 pm

    As regards the Josh Wicks incident, from the replay you can see that he jumps over Montero and stomps on his hand. Tom Soehn in the post-game interview said he didn’t see it, but that some of the other DC players said they saw it happen.

  18. Daniel Feuerstein

    September 3, 2009 at 1:01 pm

    Gods own Country: Thanks for the correction. Zakuani made so many runs and Max kept screaming his name and Montero’s. I forgot that it was Ljungberg who made that cross happen.

  19. Kartik Krishnaiyer

    September 3, 2009 at 11:32 am

    Seattle was outstanding even as a USL-1 side in this competition. So it’s no surprise as an MLs team with more resources and viability they now have a cup winning side.

  20. Gods own Country

    September 3, 2009 at 11:25 am

    “Steve Zakuani would be on the far side of the field and he ripped a shot that was stopped by Wicks, but left a big rebound in front for Montero who smacks it in the net for the first goal of the match.”

    It was not Steve Zakuani’s shot it was Ljungberg’s hard shot that wicks blocked and Freddy Montero put back in from the rebound.
    It was a good game with good fans, Imagine if DC had their own stadium it would look 10 times better.
    Can we also prove that Wicks actually steped on Montero or just pretended and jumped over him?

  21. 2011 Club World Cup

    September 3, 2009 at 3:44 am

    The Sounders are the 1st club WORLDWIDE to qualify for continental competition for the 2011 CWC. Congrats to them. Qwest Field will be packed for the 2010-2011 CCL.

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