Seattle Sounders encouraged by defensive performance as search for clean sheet drags on

SEATTLE — The talk all week was about playing for a goose egg, and although the Seattle Sounders were unable to keep a clean sheet on Saturday, nobody dared disparage the back line on Saturday.

The Sounders picked up their third straight win with a 4-1 home victory over the Colorado Rapids thanks in part to their high-flying attack, but the defense also put together a 90-minute performance that head coach Sigi Schmid was proud of. No, Seattle did not record their third shutout of the season and first since March 23, but they did show they are making progress.

"Defensively, we played well,” Schmid said. “We still need to make sure we can get that zero over the line, but it will come."

Schmid made sure to note that the only goal the Sounders allowed was after they had built a 3-0 lead. Just as important, the Rapids were only allowed to take 10 shots and goalkeeper Stefan Frei had a mostly drama free afternoon.

The match also marked a positive progression, as it was the second straight game in which the Sounders allowed just one goal. They surrended eight in their previous three matches.

"Our average is coming down, which is great, but we won comfortably today,” Frei said. “And a win is all that matters. Obviously we want to get a shutout, we want to get to the point where we take pride in shutting teams out, but today we won with a big statement win."

That the performance came at home was doubly satisfying. The Sounders had lost their previous two matches at CenturyLink Field and were in danger of losing three straight home games for the first time in the team’s MLS history.

“I think it was vital,” Seattle left back Dylan Remick said. “That was one of things coming into this game, we lost a few at home earlier in the year, and we sort of want to change that.  Make this place a stadium where people don’t want to come and play and they fear coming to play at our home stadium.

"In the last few games we gave up a goal and had to fight from behind, which is good to our character, but it’s always good to go out and put a few goals in on a team and sort of take care of the game.”