The Sounders will again be without Clint Dempsey as they face a Crew side off to a 2-0-0 start under new coach Gregg Berhalter.Off to a strong start under new coach Gregg Berhalter, the Columbus Crew face their sternest test yet when they travel to take on the Seattle Sounders.
It's an imposing trip for Columbus, but one softened by the fact that Sounders captain Clint Dempsey will be sidelined while finishing his two-game suspension. The teams will kick off at 10 p.m. Saturday on MLS Live.
After opening the season with a 3-0 win over D.C. United, Columbus rode Bernardo Anor's brace to a 2-1 win against an improved Philadelphia Union side last weekend. With center backs Michael Parkhurst and Giancarlo Gonzalez and goalkeeper Steve Clark anchoring a revamped defense, and Anor and Federico Higuain still sparking the attack, the Crew look like a team that could return to the playoffs after a two-year absence.
The Sounders, on the other hand, split two tough home games to start 2014 — defeating Sporting Kansas City and falling to Toronto FC — before winning 2-0 at the Montreal Impact. After going with a 4-4-2 against Kansas City and a 4-2-3-1 against Toronto, Seattle coach Sigi Schmid on Saturday figures to again use the 4-3-3 that defeated Montreal.
After sitting out against Montreal, Seattle midfielder Brad Evans (calf) figures to return to the lineup. Columbus midfielder Daniel Paladini (knee) is again out.