Not since 2009 have we seen a Seattle Sounders squad start 3-0-0. Until now.
With a 4-2 victory over the Chicago Fire in Bridgeview, Illinois on Saturday afternoon, the Sounders have reached that peak they hit 10 years ago. Next up for the squad is the Vancouver Whitecaps in two weeks at BC Place, where the 2019 Sounders will aim to be the first team in franchise history to be 4-0-0.
For Head Coach Brian Schmetzer, Vancouver will of course be a focus over the next 13 days, but he also realizes just how good this Seattle team can be.
"I know we're not supposed to talk about 10 games," Schmetzer told Matt Pentz of The Athletic last week. "But look at our first 10 games. We could be 10-0...Let's go. Let's get off to the best start the Seattle Sounders have ever had."
Best Seattle Sounders team ever? The season is only three games in, but this squad certainly has potential to both win the Supporters Shield and MLS Cup, perhaps at home this time. Statistically, the 2019 squad are not only winning games, but doing so in dominant scoring fashion. With 10 goals scored and only three against, MLS should be afraid of the Seattle Sounders.
Last year, it took Seattle 12 MLS matches to reach at least nine points on the season and 13 matches to reach 10 goals. They've hit both in just three games this year. The slow start narrative is dead, buried and will soon be forgotten.
The most impressive part about the club's start to 2019 is perhaps how they have been winning games and scoring goals- From every part of the field, by anyone, at any time.
Goals on Saturday against Chicago came from Victor Rodriguez on the left side off a pass from Jordan Morris on the right (8th minute), Morris in the middle off a Nicolas Lodeiro pass on the left (15th), a penalty kick scored by Lodeiro (49th), and Raul Ruidiaz in the middle off a Brad Smith cross from the left side (88th).
And if Referee Joseph Dickerson had used VAR to review an overturned Kelvin Leerdam goal on the right side in the 26th minute, ruled offside, the Sounders right back would have his third goal of the season and the final score may have been 5-2.
Unfortunately, the Sounders settled for four instead of five goals. Fortunately, it didn't matter.
And yes, Seattle was out-shot 25-10, including 12-7 on target, as well as beat on duels won, 54-51. Chicago won the possession (52.3%) and passing accuracy (84 to 80%) battles too. But at the end of day, goals win the game. Schmetzer and his team now return to Seattle with lessons to learn from and ways to improve before facing Vancouver in two weeks.
The Sounders will need to improve if they want to be where Schmetzer thinks they can be, 10-0 and the best Seattle Sounders team of all time. But they can't go 10-0 without first going 4-0, a feat no Seattle club has reached in MLS action.
The Sounders and Vancouver Whitecaps kick off at BC Place in Canada on Saturday, March 30 at 7:00 p.m. Sports Radio 950 KJR's Pre-Game Show will begin at 6:30 p.m. Check out match highlights from the 4-2 win over Chicago plus KJR's Postgame Show from Saturday with Jackson Felts, Wade Webber and James Riley, both below.