Sounders 1-0 Real Salt Lake
With the Mario Martinez goal putting the Sounders on the score sheet, we now face the LA Galaxy for the right to play in the MLS Cup.
It was another hard fought game on both sides of the ball, both Michael Gspurning and Nick Rimando were in excellent form once again, and it took a beautiful shot from Martinez to finally beat the RSL keeper.
This wasn’t just any goal either.
Martinez took a wonderful pass from Freddy Montero that was perfectly placed at his foot, and volleyed a cannon past Rimando for the game winner.
Not only the game winner, but the winning goal that will prolong this season for at least another two games.
Move over Nintendo, and Mr. Lemieux, there’s a new Super Mario in this world.
Getting a rare start, Mario Martinez used this choice by Sigi Schmid to his advantage, playing with a chip on his shoulder so to speak.
Besides the games lone goal, Martinez nearly scored on a set piece in the first half, but the ball was just barely deflected off of Rimando’s gloves and off the cross bar for the corner.
Speaking of corners, Martinez took over the duties of corner kicks on the left side of the pitch, and delivered a couple gems into the box, but unfortunately they didn’t end up in the back of the net.
Just like he has done all year long for the Sounders, Michael Gspurning went above and beyond with another clean sheet performance in what was the Sounders biggest game of the year.
Just think, at this time last year, we were saying goodbye to the legend Kasey Keller, and wondering what the future in net would be like for the Sounders.
I think we came up with the right choice as successor, and Mikey G could just be another northwest legend in the making.
There’s nothing to hate about our team finally getting over that plateau that has been unreachable for the first 3 years.
I could go on and find some little nit-picky little thing to obsess over, but why ruin a good thing?
Let’s just rejoice in the fact that we are one step closer to reaching the goal that Sigi Schmid laid out for this team at the begging of the year. The MLS Cup.
Two more games, and then we could be playing in the Cup final for the first time in history.
Yes LA will be a very tough opponent to face, but they are a little more favorable than the alternative, which was San Jose, who we couldn’t buy a break against this year.
I have faith that Gspurning will keep the ball out of the net, and I am praying that Josh Saunders doesn’t have another game of his career against us in the next round.
I don’t have enough nail growth to deal with another keeper single handily beating us.
Let’s keep this going, and can’t wait for Sunday!