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Apr 9, 2023 at 3.30am UK
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St Louis City

Atencio (65'), Ruidiaz (71'), Nerwinski (89' og.)
Gomez Andrade (37')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Bartlett (6'), Parker (84')

Preview: Seattle Sounders vs. St Louis City - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Seattle Sounders vs. St Louis City - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Major League Soccer clash between Seattle Sounders and St Louis City, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

In an unlikely first-place showdown, the Seattle Sounders welcome St Louis City to Lumen Field for the first time on Saturday.

St Louis suffered their first career defeat in an MLS regular season game last weekend, falling 1-0 to Minnesota United, while the Sounders sit two points behind them for the Western Conference lead after edging the Los Angeles Galaxy 2-1.

Match preview

Six matches into the new campaign, and it looks like the Seattle team of years ago are back, with the Rave Green collecting 13 out of a possible 18 points thus far.

On the road in Los Angeles, we saw them continue their dominance versus the Galaxy, extending their unbeaten run to 10 matches against them, becoming the first team in MLS history to achieve that.

It was also a milestone evening for Brian Schmetzer, who reached 100 regulation wins (excluding shootouts) as an MLS manager in just 212 games, surpassing Bob Bradley and Bruce Arena as the fastest coach to reach that plateau, with the previous two getting there in 215 matches.

While this team have always had experience and depth, the return of Joao Paulo, who missed most of last season with a torn ACL, has re-energized this group, who look more dynamic and are causing their opponents all sorts of problems out wide.

Not only have they been more potent in the attacking third this season, but their backline is among the stingiest in the league, conceding the second-fewest goals so far this year (three), none of which has come on their home field.

The Rave Green have only conceded once in the opening half this year and have not trailed in a regular season home fixture since September 2022.

Nothing lasts forever as St Louis City discovered in their previous match when their magical early run ended at home against the Loons.

A 78th-minute penalty from Luis Amarilla was the first goal this expansion side had conceded in close to 350 minutes, while they also failed to find the back of the net for the first time all season.

That loss may be a temporary setback for Bradley Carnell and his side, but there are still many good things to like about where they sit, as St Louis still have the best goal differential in the league (+10), while continuing to lead the Supporters' Shield standings with 15 points.

They have had their share of scoring opportunities through the early portion of the campaign, even versus the Loons, surprising their opponents with pace and great vision to pick out their front players.

Much of their early success has been due to a collective team effort, as a handful of players have won at least five tackles, while eight have already found the back of the net.

When they trounced Real Salt Lake 4-0 a couple of weeks ago, St Louis became the first expansion franchise in the 21st century to win its opening three MLS road matches in a regular-season campaign.

Seattle Sounders Major League Soccer form:

St Louis City Major League Soccer form:

Team News

Alex Roldan played the full 90 minutes for Seattle against the Galaxy despite being questionable before the match with some pain in his left calf, Dylan Teves is out because of a right hamstring strain, while Kelyn Rowe continues to recover from an injured left hamstring.

Jordan Morris, who leads the league with eight goals, continues to shine in a number nine role, scoring the opener for the Rave Green a week ago after notching all four in their previous victory over Sporting Kansas City (4-1), becoming the third MLS home-grown player to reach 50 goals in the regular season, joining Gyasi Zardes and Diego Fagundez, while Leo Chu scored his first of the year with the Sounders.

Chu leads the league with five assists, while Stefan Frei can surpass former midfielder Osvaldo Alonso for the most career starts in franchise history, with the first-choice Seattle keeper collecting his 322nd start in all competitions last weekend.

Rasmus Alm will be questionable for St Louis on Saturday due to a sore knee, while Joakim Nilsson remains out for the same reason.

Roman Burki saw his shutout string end at 345 minutes when he was beaten from the penalty spot in their previous encounter, Klauss had his goal contribution streak end after 571 minutes of play, while Kyle Hiebert has played every minute that he has been available, missing the match versus RSL because of the international window.

Eduard Lowen has four assists this season, putting him in a three-way tie for second in the league alongside Alexandru Matan, Daniel Gazdag and Thiago Almada.

Seattle Sounders possible starting lineup:
Frei; A. Roldan, Gomez, Ragen, Tolo; Paulo, Rusnak; C. Roldan, Lodeiro, Chu; Morris

St Louis City possible starting lineup:
Burki; Nerwinski, Parker, Hiebert, Nelson; Stroud, Vassilev, Lowen, Ostrak; Klauss, Gioacchini

We say: Seattle Sounders 2-1 St Louis City

After an off year in 2022, the powerhouse Sounders are back to winning ways, and we expect their stingy defensive unit will frustrate this potent St Louis attack on Saturday, while the Rave Green have a striker in fine form, who is brimming with confidence and could do some more damage.

How to watch

You can watch Seattle Sounders vs. St Louis City and every MLS match this season live on Apple TV. Click here for more details on how to subscribe.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.
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Eastern Conference

1Inter MiamiInter Miami25165456391753
2FC CincinnatiCincinnati25153744331148
3Columbus Crew23127447222543
4New York Red BullsNY Red Bulls251011442311141
5New York City FCNY City2511593630638
6Charlotte FCCharlotte FC2510783027337
7Orlando City259793938134
9Atlanta UnitedAtlanta2577113536-128
10Philadelphia UnionPhiladelphia2569104542327
11CF MontrealMontreal2569103449-1527
12Nashville SCNashville2568112639-1326
13DC United2568113550-1526
14Chicago Fire2567123042-1225
15New England RevolutionNew England2372142347-2423

Western Conference

1Los Angeles GalaxyLA Galaxy26147550361449
2Los Angeles FCLos Angeles24145548301847
3Real Salt LakeSalt Lake25128551341744
4Colorado RapidsColorado2612595043741
5Vancouver WhitecapsVancouver2411584335838
6Houston DynamoHouston2410773530537
7Seattle SoundersSeattle2510783429537
8Portland TimbersPortland2510695042836
9Minnesota UnitedMinnesota Utd2596104041-133
10Austin FCAustin2587102837-931
12Sporting Kansas CityKansas2666144152-1124
13St Louis City25411103246-1423
14San Jose EarthquakesEarthquakes2542193161-3014
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