Top Stories

Sounders rally to earn CCL final first-leg draw at Pumas

36 Shares

The Seattle Sounders endured a forgettable first 48 minutes during Wednesday’s Concacaf Champions League final first-leg at UNAM Pumas, but a pair of second-half VAR decisions went their way and Nicolas Lodeiro did the rest to set up a dramatic second leg in Seattle on May 4.

Lodeiro converted a pair of second-half penalty kicks, including a 98th-minute equalizer to help complete a Sounders comeback from 2-0 down in Wednesday’s 2-2 draw in Mexico City.

The Sounders will now return home for Wednesday’s second leg at Lumen Field, where Seattle fans will be rooting for the Sounders to become the first Major League Soccer team to win the Concacaf Champions League.

Pumas drew first blood in the 38th minute when Juan Dinenno converted a penalty kick re-take after a Stefan Frei penalty save was nullified when a VAR review determined that Frei was off the goal line when he made the save. Dinenno made the second chance count to give Pumas a lead heading into halftime.

Dinenno scored his CCL-best ninth goal of the competition in the 48th minute when he fired a powerful header past Frei to make the score 2-0, and threaten to blow the final series open on the first night.

The Sounders eventually responded though, keeping Pumas from finding a third goal before drawing a 77th-minute penalty when Pumas’ American midfielder Sebastian Saucedo was whistled for a handball in the penalty area. Lodeiro converted from the penalty spot to bring the Sounders within a goal.

The Seattle equalizar late in second-half stoppage time when Cristian Roldan was fouled in the penalty area. A VAR review confirmed the foul and Lodeiro blasted him his second penalty attempt to help send the Sounders back to Seattle with a 2-2 draw, meaning a win at Lumen Field in next week’s second leg would make the Sounders the first MLS team to win a CCL title.


What did you think of Wednesday’s CCL Final opener? Think the Sounders will secure the victory in Seattle next week?

Share your thoughts below.

Comments

  1. Man, this game was weird in so many ways. I’m not ashamed to say that I want the Sounders to get it done. Before ATL, I loved the Sounders and watched every game when they were on the tube. Do it for the MLS, do it for the fans, do it for Schmetzer, Sigi and all the faithful Rave Green!

    Also, Jordan Morris is an attack killer … I hope he will be killer in attack this leg …

    Reply
  2. This was kind of a strange game in that Seattle played better in the first half but trailed 1-0. Then Pumas played better in the second half, but Seattle ended up scoring twice. The Sounders were saved by Pumas defensive incompetence. I don’t think Seattle played all that well. They would get a good attack going and get in good positions, but their passing was poor in the final third. Hopefully they play as well as they are capable of in Seattle. If they do, they will win. Finally, a shout out to C. Roldan. He gets no love when he’s named to the USMNT, but during the CCL games he has generally been the Sounders best player. Pumas thought so too, since they continually fouled him whenever he was part of a Seattle attack. Roldan spent a lot of time on his back.

    Reply
    • Roldan gets love, you just need to find people that understand soccer. I get he isn’t a starter for the level of nat team, but he isn’t a role player. He is a MANY roles player. They haven’t even put him at right back, where he is VERY good and rarely play him at holding, his best position.

      Reply
  3. Playing in Mexico is usually the backbreaker for MLS teams. With that leg out of the way, Seattle should be able to finish this out at home.

    Reply
    • RSL had the same score line in Mexico 11 years ago. Since away goals counted, they basically had to do no worse than draw 0-0 or 1-1, yet they lost 1-0 at home. So, there is no guarantees.

      Reply
      • A big difference is Monterey had been competitive in LigaMx after their 2009 title which qualified them for 2010-11 CCL. Pumas qualified by finishing 2nd in 2020 post Covid round and have finished 15, 11, and 12th since. Seattle is a big favorite going into the final leg.

  4. This is it! This is the year!
    Pumas is a pretty bad team that doesn’t seem to have the balls to win when it matters.
    Sounders can’t let this one go!

    Reply
  5. The team is so good. It is always said, great teams get a win when they arent playing their best……this is for sure a great team. Partly because of the weather, but they could have done much better in all phases of the game.

    Reply

Leave a Comment