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Sounders beat Whitecaps in final MLS game at Empire Field, win Cascadia Cup

SoundersCaps (Getty)

The Vancouver Whitecaps had the look of a team intent on winning their final game at Empire Field, their MLS home during their inaugural season in the league. The Seattle Sounders looked like a team doomed to be punished by a terrible start and an inspired opponent.

Unfortunately for the Whitecaps, they could only manage a single goal during their early-game domination, which allowed the Sounders to recover from their slow start to rattle off three goals and post a convincing 3-1 victory on Saturday night.

Colombian striker Fredy Montero played the role of hero for Seattle, scoring a pair of goals and spear-heading a Sounders attack that took advantage of defensive breakdowns by the Vancouver defense.

The victory helped the Sounders lift the Cascadia Cup, awarded to the team with the best record in games between Seattle, Portland and Vancouver.

Kasey Keller was key for Seattle, recording a plethora of early saves as Vancouver controlled the early going. Camilo Sanvezzo broke through in the 22nd minute off a pass from Davide Chiumiento, but the Whitecaps failed to beat Keller again despite a handful of great chances, all halted by stellar Keller saves.

Brad Evans scored the equalizer for Seattle in the 30th minute on a penalty kick, and with the match still in doubt, Montero broke down Vancouver with a pair of second-half goals just four minutes apart, including a beautiful game-winning finish and long-range insurance strike.

It was a night to forget for Jay DeMerit. The Whitecaps defender gave up the penalty, had a bad clearance that led to Montero's first goal, then saw Montero's third goal deflect off him before beating Joe Cannon.

Here are the match highlights.

What did you think of Seattle's performance? See the Sounders being an MLS Cup threat? Think the Whitecaps have something to build on for 2012, or will new head coach Martin Rennie have a serious rebuilding job to do?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Awful day for DeMerit. Yellow card, give up a penalty and a goal, hoofs a bad clearance right to Montero and he scores easily, and on the next goal Montero’s shot get’s deflected off Jay’s leg

  2. Wrong. They have shown well considering this is their 1st year in the league. The offense is great to watch, but their defense has been hurt by injuries. They will very very strong in their new home next year. All they need is a playmaker in the middle of the pitch. Pete Vagenas is too old.

  3. Actually, it’s not going to be Field Turf but Polytan. It will be the first Polytan surface in MLS. A couple of French and Swiss league teams use Polytan already.

  4. Have you heard that 200 events took place at BC Place before the renovation and 200 events will take place there after the renovation? Turf is necessary.

  5. As a neutral, I watch the Whitecaps play and I see a team capable of attractive football, with some passion to back it up. I don’t think they are very far from being a good team. As for Soehn, he’s arranged a pretty good replacement for himself for next year. That’s a positive.

    I really don’t get the negativity.

  6. The hate of field turf is always about the change to the game. What about real grass that has holes all over it. Or, a field that is soaked by massive rain and gets torn up during play. Balls bouncing all over the place. I’ve watched some games in Central America, during the CCL that good turf would be a true upgrade. That being said. A beautiful grass pitch is always better. The problem is that some areas cannot keep it that way. The Northwest has too much rain. Even Portland put artificial in it’s Soccer Specific stadium.

  7. Very happy for the Whitecaps as they move into a beautiful stadium (shared with their CFL team, I believe). Just one question … Is their new surface going to be a natural grass surface??? PLEASE tell me this isn’t going to be fieldturf.


    It changes the game soooo much it’s unbelievable. Every single bounce and pass is different. This is MLS – This is now a truly professional product. Can’t wait to watch games on cable next year on NBC Sports (Versus). Garber was on point with that one.

    Did I mention that I hate turf? Just wanted to be clear.

    Ok, I know I’m overreacting, but I think it’s very important. Seattle …. I’m lookin’ at you too …..

  8. Chumiento
    Camilo San Vezzo
    For the most part this is the heart of what Soehm and company put together. DeMerit & Thorrington have been injured, so hard to say that his judgment was poor on them. Dunfield, was a miss but they cut bait early there. Jarju, well I vote bust but he’s only had a few weeks. Hassli, Chiumiento, San Vezzo, Rochat, Cannon, Salinas have been reasonably good. Salgado is young and a project, so I’d leave him out of the discussion.

    Out of those, I’d argue his success rate is probably 66% (if we include the injury prone as busts) which is as good or better than many teams in sports around the world.


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