SEATTLE – Considering his team had just won their fifth straight game, Brad Evans did not seem very pleased amongst an otherwise jubilant Seattle Sounders postgame locker room after Wednesday night’s 2-1 win over FC Dallas.
The reason quickly became apparent. Evans, who is still fighting for a spot on the US World Cup team, was part of a defense that allowed just two shots on goal and mostly shut down one of the most prolific offenses in MLS.
But for the seventh straight game, the Sounders failed to register a shutout, and Evans was the main culprit. The Sounders captain was whistled for a penalty on Blas Pérez, which Michel converted for FC Dallas’ only goal. It was the fourth penalty called against the Sounders this year, equaling the number they allowed in the last two seasons combined.
Evans, for one, was not remotely convinced of any particular wrongdoing on his part.
"I'm looking at the ball the whole time," Evans said. "It was Blas Pérez, pretty standard. That's what he's looking for. No intention of fouling him in any way. I had my hands completely out of the way the whole time, I think.”
Replays were not particularly conclusive. Although Pérez was bracketed by Evans and Zach Scott and it wasn't clear if he could reach the cross, there was obvious contact.
"I think once he felt foot-on-foot if he's kicking back, I don't know,” he said. “Then he just falls like a sack of [crap] on the ground. That's pretty typical of him. That's how he plays. I don't expect anything else. I should've known better, though, just to kind of stay out of his way and let him try to bring the ball down, I guess. But no intention to foul there."
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Other than the penalty, Evans felt as though he turned in a solid performance and once again showed how his positional versatility can be an asset.
“I felt confident on the ball, I connected passes out of the back,” Evans said. “In the second half I was pushing forward more and playing with those guys up front. They only had two shots on goal, one of those I’m assuming was the penalty, so one shot on goal in the run of play. I guess I kind of did the job.”