Chivas USA and Seattle play physical match to a 0-0 tie

A scary collision and two red cards round out a scoreless game

August 14 vs. Seattle Sounders Braun gets a boot to the face

Photo Credit: 
Victor Decolongon/Getty Images

 Chivas USA and Seattle Sounders FC played to a scoreless draw Saturday night at the Home Depot Center in a hard-fought, physical contest in which both teams ended the game with 10 men.

The result moves Chivas to within one point of Houston at the bottom of the Western Conference, while Seattle improve to an even 3-3-4 on the road and gain sole possession of fourth place in the West behind FC Dallas. Chivas USA remain the only team in the conference never to have lost to Seattle.

Saturday’s match started meekly. Both sides looked timid in attack and lacked the killer instinct to put any real pressure on veteran goalkeepers Zach Thornton and Kasey Keller. For Chivas USA, a lack of chemistry up front seemed to be the culprit as new forward Alan Gordon struggled to find any cohesion with strike partner Justin Braun. The Sounders enjoyed good spells of possession, but were often missing the final pass to attackers Blaise Nkufo and Fredy Montero.

  CHIVAS USA

 

SEATTLE  
SHO

10
 
10
SHO

SOG

3
 
4
SOG

SVS

4
 
3
SVS

F

8
 
11
F

OFF

6
 
4
OFF

CK

4
 
5
CK

 

The best chance of the half belonged to Seattle with Nkufo playing conductor. The Swiss international skirted around Chivas USA left back Jonathan Bornstein and charged along the Red-and-White goal line toward Thornton. Nkufo found a darting Montero at the very last moment, but Montero’s touch let him down and he could only manage to push the ball into the side netting.

While the first half may have been a little uninspiring, the second half was anything but. Chivas USA emerged from the locker room with a renewed sense of confidence and poured pressure on the Sounders. Much of the extra spark came from Giancarlo Maldonado, whose halftime introduction gave the Red-and-White three strikers on the pitch.

The Goats almost broke the seal in the 58th minute when Paulo Nagamura found some space on the right wing and sent a low cross across Kasey Keller’s 6-yard line. Both Maldonado and Rodolfo Espinoza crashed toward the net, but the ball was just out of reach of both and skidded over the end line.

The Sounders pushed right back. Attacking down the left side with numbers, Nkufo and Álvaro Fernández connected on a nice give-and-go to free Nkufo in the left corner. The big Swiss striker lofted a high ball into the area toward right winger Sanna Nyassi, who got a head to it, but his effort only bounced off the right post and out of play.

The Red-and-White pushed hard in the game’s closing minutes, intent on finding three points at home. Buoyed by the addition of Jesus Padilla, the Goats peppered the Seattle area with all manner of lofted crosses and driven balls but were unable to find a go-ahead. The Sounders nearly managed to steal a win with only moments remaining when Osvaldo Alsonso blasted a howitzer from 20 yards out, but his effort was pawed aside by Thornton.

The final minute of the game was punctuated by a near bench-clearing brawl on the near touchline after Chivas USA defender Mariano Trujillo threw an elbow at Leo Gonzalez. Trujillo was given a straight red card for the incident and will miss the Goats’ next game at Dallas, while González also saw red.

Scoring Summary:

None

Misconduct Summary:

SEA -- Jeff Parke (caution; Reckless Foul) 89
CHV -- Mariano Trujillo (ejection; Violent Conduct) 93+
SEA -- Leo Gonzalez (ejection; Violent Conduct) 93+

Lineups:

Seattle Sounders -- Kasey Keller, James Riley, Patrick Ianni, Jeff Parke, Leo Gonzalez, Sanna Nyassi (Roger Levesque 82), Osvaldo Alonso, Nathan Sturgis, Alvaro Fernandez (Miguel Montano 67), Fredy Montero (Nate Jaqua 86), Blaise Nkufo.

Substitutes Not Used: Tyrone Marshall, Zach Scott, Mike Seamon, Terry Boss.

Chivas USA -- Zach Thornton, Mariano Trujillo, Michael Umana, Dario Delgado, Ante Jazic (Jonathan Bornstein 30), Rodolfo Espinoza, Michael Lahoud, Paulo Nagamura, Osael Romero (Giancarlo Maldonado 46), Justin Braun, Alan Gordon (Jesus Padilla 79).

Substitutes Not Used: Carlos Borja, Marcelo Saragosa, Ben Zemanski, Kevin Guppy.

Referee: Alex Prus
Referee's Assistants: George Gansner; Brian Poeschel
4th Official: Ricardo Salazar
Time of Game: 1:53
Weather: Clear and 66 degrees
Attendance: 13,839