David Falk has followed soccer in the Puget Sound region since 1974. This blog covers Sounders FC, local college soccer, Seattle Wolves FC, Tacoma Tide FC and Kitsap Pumas. Send tips or comments to: goalseattle@gmail.com
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Seattle Soccer Examiner

Seattle Soccer Examiner

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Five clubs, five questions for 2009: Seattle Sounders FC

We've reached the top level of Puget Sound soccer and the top club in our region in our "Five Questions" series. In 2009 all other local sides will fight it out in the shadows of the debut of Seattle Sounders FC into Major League Soccer.

Five questions for Sounders FC

1. Can Sounders FC present a truly 'world class' soccer experience at Qwest Field?

Major League Soccer fans on messages boards around the country have been obsessing about Qwest Field's soccer pedigree since the day Seattle was awarded an MLS franchise. We are 2 1/2 months away from our first home match, and they are waiting to see if Sounders management can make good on their promise to make Qwest "great" for soccer. The to-do list includes a pristine pitch for every match (no NFL lines), soccer-friendly staff that 'get' what footie fans are like, 100% open concessions, non-intrusive public announcements, a willingness to let the fans create the atmosphere. So...what's going to happen?

2. Who are these season ticket holders, and do they like to make noise?
Nearly as big a mystery as our future starting roster is who all of the people are that have come out of the woodwork and bought Sounders season tickets. It's all good, but I can't help but wonder what percentage of ticket members are Seahawks holders just giving MLS 'a try.' Will they like what they see? Do they 'get the game?' Can they bring the noise, world soccer style?

3. Is Sigi 'up for it?'

Take a breath, Mr. Schmid. Now comes the really hard part. You'll need to be a master conductor to get the new Seattle team playing a happy tune. You've graciously complimented Adrian Hanauer and Chris Henderson on the players they handed off to you last month. I hope you can get them playing as a team sooner rather than later. I'd rather be counting victories than minutes between goals scored in 2009. You've also said you are not 'starting from scratch.' Here's hoping you don't do too much 'head scratching' when training camp kicks off in a few weeks.

4. How will the Ljunberg saga play out?

Freddie has had the surgery that is supposed to decrease the likelihood of further hamstring injuries. When he rejoins the club he will have missed all of training camp and Sigi will have had to build an attack without him. If that attack is successful minus Ljungberg, will Sigi keep Freddie benched? Was Seattle's DP signing a mistake? Will the Sounders look back and wish they had Freddie's salary to spread around other club needs? If Freddie is a success, will he become the talk of the town?

5. Can Kasey keep them out?

Kasey Keller will defend a goal while wearing a 'Seattle' crest for the first time in his long career. How will he do? He's been chomping at the bit to get going, but once he does will he like what he's been chomping for?

Can he organize a defense that has never played together before? Will he feel 'heat' from Chris Eylander as a back-up, or will he feel 'secure' as a starter to the point of distraction?

Five clubs, five questions:

Kitsap Pumas
Tacoma Tide FC
Seattle Wolves FC (PCSL)
Seattle PDL

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