Sounders’ Concacaf Champions League Title Boosts Seattle’s Football Stature

SEATTLE – All goes against the Sounders, which resulted in nearly two hours of collisions by Seattle fans in blue and green pushing their electric energy to sound.

This is history – and it’s like the collaboration between the group and its supporters.

For more than 20 years, no major league team has won the CONCACAF Champions League, which includes the best teams from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. But The Sounders ended the standoff with a Pacific Northwest downpour: a 3-0 win over Pumas of Mexico on Wednesday.

How important is the win?

As this week ran into the tournament, Sounders General Manager Garth Lagerwey called it a moment of immortality.

Inside a promotional hype video, none other than Seahawks retired icon Marshawn Lynch called a “big (expletive) game.” At half-time on Wednesday, with the Sounders ahead 1-0, MLS Director Don Garber stood in his suite at Lumen Field, staring me in the eye, and calling the match ” “The biggest game in the history of the league.”

Since its inception in 1996, MLS has sought to become an American league of such quality that it can stand-to-toe with global powers. But so far, the failure has been a steady run for the MLS in the annual tournament, with teams from the Spanish League winning 13 Concacaf tournaments. tail end.

Well, the Sounders buried the failure on Wednesday.

At first the match was competitive and resulted in a physical game that forced two pairs of key Sounders, João Paulo and Nouhou Tolo, to leave with injuries. But Seattle flashed its trademark resilience. Goalie Stefan Frei, known as the Man of the Match, was instrumental in defending the poor defense, and the Sounders kept the offense until forward Raul Ruidiaz scored on the shot. reaction late in half. In the 80th minute, Ruidiaz added another goal of good attack.

Nicolás Lodeiro closed the victory with a goal in the 88th minute and ran to the venue to celebrate the fan frenzy.

Winning qualifying team for the FIFA Club World Cup, a competition with the Royal Football League. Premier League Chelsea win it to the end. Liverpool or Real Madrid will represent Europe in the future. Only in the same draw as the group of pedigree is new to MLS

It’s a fitting, therefore, Sounders to bring the league to this new rain. Since entering the MLS during a wave of expansion in 2009, they have made the city rich in football by winning two MLS Cup titles in four games to go. at last. Seattle has led the league in all but two seasons, with local fans taking the same interest in Lumen as Seahawks fans have known. Probably more. The match-record 68,741 fans appeared to watch the team at home stadium Pumas. Wednesday night.

How did Seattle become an African soccer behemoth?

There is no answer. Part of it is the city’s history of recognizing differences and struggles – which also explains football in American sports terms. Seattle gave birth to Boeing and Microsoft, Starbucks and Amazon. It gives the world grunge rock and Quincy Jones. Jimi Hendrix to high school three miles from Lumen Field. Bruce Lee put his athletic skills on a short walk.

One of his greatest works of art is a sculpture troll sitting under a bridge. It has become customary to drape it in a mammoth blue and green Sounders scarf before playing major.

The love needed by this city for football in all genres – from the Sounders to the OL Reign of the NWSL, to colleges and junior teams – is also a thing of the past and Special team: First Seattle Sounders of the long-running North American Soccer League.

From 1974 to 1983, the Sounders group was part of the first effort to bring major stakes, the American race for football in the hemisphere.

If you ask me, someone in Seattle who was growing up at the time, I would say love begins, in particular, with a play.

Ever since I was 9 years old I have been calling it the Pelé Game. That was when I took the city bus to see the old iteration of Sounders. The date is April 9, 1976, the first sporting event to be held at the present Kingdom.

Crowds of nearly 60,000, then the largest North American footballer of all time, watch the Seattle host star New York Cosmos and its director, the greatest athlete. in soccer found: Pelé. The Black Pearl, as it’s known, came to NASL to celebrate the last days of its career – and to represent North America through sports. I do not remember the details of the match as much as I do remember the danger of lithe and strong Brazilian.

Pelé was not disappointed. He scored two goals in a 3-1 win.

The game is harbinger. The original Sounders players quickly turned into local stories, deep into the city fabric. In those days, like I said a Sounder visited every class in every public school. In 1977, the Sounders made it to the League Football Bowl title match. Playing in front of an entire home in Portland, Ore., A three-hour drive to the south, they lost to Cosmos, 2-1, in the last loss -exhibition game Pelé ever played.

“I still have his shirt on,” Jimmy McAlister said in a telephone interview. I could almost see a smile in his voice. A Defender of the Seattle and NASL rookie team of the year 1977, McAlister told me how to call Pelé in his beautiful No. 1 shirt. 10. Legend obliged. The shirt now sits in McAlister’s lockbox.

“People call me from time to time, want to buy it,” he said. It is not for sale. Some things are worth more than money. The shirt contains the memory and the spirit.

McAlister loves modern sound. He praised their relationship, their blue collar work, and their growing talent. Raised in Seattle, he was one of the many Sounders who remained in the city after their last day of play. Today it runs one of the largest development organizations. Many others have been there to teach sports, training in hospitals and in high school and college. Some have helped lead small groups that are currently inactive – also known as Sounders.

They kept the athletes alive in the few decades of NASL’s death and birth from MLS

On Wednesday night, nearly an hour after the game, fans were still at Lumen Field. Very large of them. Happy chants rumbled to the confetti-covered fields. Players responded by carrying the Champions League gold cup high. Unlike the Kingdome game of 1976 – the original Sounders compared to the infamous, star-studded cosmos – this game is forgotten because of the opponent. It is memorable because of the in-house team, which recently positioned itself on the international charts. And that would surely make Pelé, the longest-serving athlete in interest, more than a little proud.

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