The Seattle Sounders didn't take much time getting over their CONCACAF Champions League elimination, returning to CenturyLink Field to open the 2012 MLS season in stylish fashion.
Sounders forward David Estrada not only scored his first career MLS goal, he notched a hat-trick in the process, to lead Seattle to a commanding 3-1 victory over Toronto FC on Saturday night.
Just three days after an embarrassing 6-1 loss to Santos Laguna in the Champions League quarterfinals, the Sounders looked every bit like the team expected to challenge for the league title.
Estrada used his hustle to open the scoring when he ran onto an Alvaro Fernandez pass before out-working three TFC players to the ball in front of goal and converting in the 17th minute. Toronto's defense suffered a major blow just 24 minutes into the match when German defender Torsten Frings left the match with an injury.
Marc Burch played provider for Estrada's second goal by springing him with a long pass as Estrada raced behind the Toronto defense. Estrada cooly slotted his shot past Milos Kocic to make the score 2-0.
TFC fought back courtesy of a beautiful Ryan Johnson goal, but Seattle responded immediately as Estrada completed his hat trick with another combination play with Fernandez, working a give-and-go wih the Uruguayan before finishing perfectly to seal the victory.
Here are the match highlights:
What did you think of the match? Surprised to see Estrada make such a big impact? Think Toronto FC can recover and post results without Frings?
Share your thoughts below.