The Sounders beat Mexican club Santos Laguna at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday night. They take the 2-1 lead on aggregate into TorreÃ³n, Mexico on March 14 when the outcome of the quarterfinals will be decided in the second leg of the tie. The winner will advance to the Semifinals and play the winner of Toronto FC and LA Galaxy. I won’t do a recap of the match because you can find that on many other sites. But I will relay one story I saw unfold.
After the second half began, newly acquired Sounders Christian Sivebaek and Eddie Johnson were warming up behind the goal in front of the passionate and vocal supporters in the Brougham End. For just about the entire 15-20 minute warmup, there was one guy that was yelling words of encouragement to Eddie. “Welcome to Seattle, Eddie!” “We believe in you Eddie!” “Seattle needs you Eddie!” You get the idea.
The few times I glanced behind me to where he was warming up, it was clear that Eddie was focusing on his warmup routine along with the play on the pitch and seemed to be ignoring the loud supporter. When he was called over to the bench to be subsequently subbed into the match to make his first official appearance for the club, he got one last shout of encouragement, “Go get ’em, Eddie!”
After the match concluded, I noticed (just a little too late to capture it all with my camera) that Eddie was coming over with his jersey in his hand looking for someone specific in the stands. Everyone was yelling, asking for him to throw it to them. He pointed at the guy that (I believe) was yelling at him, and tossed his jersey up to him with a big smile.
That was pretty classy, Eddie. Welcome to Seattle, indeed.
OK, now to the pictures…