TUKWILA, Wash. — Call it a teachable moment.
Seattle midfielder Lamar Neagle showed contrition for his red card in the Sounders’ CONCACAF Champions League victory over Comunicaciones on Tuesday night. On the play in question, Neagle went in hard for a challenge and missed the ball entirely, making violent contact with the shins of Jean Márquez.
The match referee, who had already handed out five cautions at that point, brandished the red card in Neagle’s direction, ending the 24-year-old’s night.
“I kicked him late, so I can’t really be too upset about it,” Neagle said on Thursday. “I feel like there were some worse fouls that went on, like when Mauro [Rosales] got tackled from behind and it ended up being a yellow. You can be mad that maybe he wasn’t consistent, but I can’t be mad. I got him late and hit him fully on the leg.”
Neagle has emerged as a dangerous option on the wings for Seattle. Playing primarily as a left midfielder, his speed and direct style offer a complement to the more technical Álvaro Fernández. The red card aside, Neagle has been a reliable option in 2011 after spending last season with the Charleston Battery, followed by a brief stint in Finland with IFK Mariehamn.
In 2011, the Seattle-area native has played in 19 matches in all competitions, contributing three goals. He said heavy legs may have contributed to the foul, which was one of the only red cards of his life.
“I think I’ve had one red card in my life before that, in high school,” Neagle said.
After their match at FC Dallas on Saturday (9 pm ET, watch LIVE online), the Sounders will travel directly to Monterrey, Mexico, for their next CCL match on Aug. 23. Head coach Sigi Schmid said it’s possible that different players will fly in or out during the two-match road trip.
Patrick Ianni won’t be available for Saturday’s match after a hamstring injury, but could be ready for Tuesday’s CCL encounter with the defending champions.
Brad Evans and Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, who both played the full 90 minutes against Comunicaciones after recovering from injuries, are also available and may play a role during the two-match road trip.
“How many minutes do we want to pile on them this early?” Schmid asked rhetorically of Hurtado and Evans. “We don’t want to have a recurrence of the injury.”
Andrew Winner covers the Seattle Sounders for MLSsoccer.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewWinnerMLS