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Crossing the Touchline: Crew vs. Seattle Sounders

What you need to know about the the MLS Cup Final opponent.

MLS: Columbus Crew SC at Seattle Sounders FC Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

The Columbus Crew and the Seattle Sounders will battle for the 2020 MLS Cup Final on Saturday night. This is a chance for the Crew to take home the team’s second ever major championship, while the Sounders are looking for their third title.

There’s no doubt this is going to be an interesting MLS Cup Final at MAPFRE Stadium on Saturday night.

To get a better sense of the Seattle side of things, we reached out to our SB Nation friends at Sounder At Heart and site manager Mark Kastner. Let’s learn about the Sounders.

Questions for Sounders At Heart

Massive Report: In my mind, the biggest thing in this game is the Sounders’ experience of playing and winning the MLS Cup. How do you see this playing a factor at MAPFRE Stadium?

Sounders At Heart: Brian Schmetzer prides his team on being ready for the biggest games. Part of that is the experience of veterans this team has. We’ve talked a lot about how weird of a year 2020 has been for everyone, including this final. But there’s potentially 5 starters tonight that played in the 2016 MLS Cup final. Having been on this stage before provides familiarity that’s priceless.

MR: Raul Ruidiaz or Nicolas Lodeiro, who is more valuable to this Seattle team?

SAH: don’t have children, but I imagine this question is like asking someone to pick their favorite kid. I think I have to pick Nicolas Lodeiro. He’s the alpha and the omega of this team. If you remember back to the Crew v Sounders match in March, Lodeiro was out with an injury and Seattle really struggled. He’s the one that makes things tick.

MR: If there is an X-factor this game for the Sounders, besides any obvious names, who do you think it is and why?

SAH: I could look silly in a few hours but I think Gustav Svensson will start and will have a big game. Svensson’s passing range and defensive ability will help unlock the Crew defense and keep Zelarayán in check. Svensson has been a regular starter but missed two playoffs games because of a positive Covid-19 test. Of course, he scored the winner against Minnesota. I think he’s ready to take his starting job back.

To read Massive Report’s answers to Sounder At Heart’s questions, click here.