Seattle Sounders beat Toronto FC to clinch their second MLS title. Sounders played host to the Canadian side at CenturyLink Field on Sunday. A brilliant second-half performance saw Sounders go 3 goals up before veteran striker Jozy Altidore grabbed a consolation goal for Toronto. The club set history by lifting the trophy for the second time in four years.
Sounders came to the match as favorites. They had the backing of the home crowd with over 69,274 spectators in attendance. Sounders, who joined the MLS as an expansion club in 2009, continue to establish their name as a strong league force. Ever since their introduction to the MLS, they are the second most successful club in recent times. They now boast of two cup wins, only one behind LA Galaxy.
How good were Sounders in MLS cup final game?
Many pundits and fans alike expected the Seattle club to coast to victory. However, this was not the case. Toronto FC managed to keep the ball for the first hour. They were able to create decent chances but could not convert. Sounders quickly found their rhythm. Kevin Lederman opened up the scoring with a deflected shot.
Former Barcelona player, Victor Rodriguez, added a brilliant second at the 75th minute. Raul Ruidaz took the game to bed at the 90th minute with a superb chip over the advancing goalkeeper. Even though Toronto grabbed a goal in extra time, it was not enough to salvage the trophy.
Seattle Sounders 2019 season performance
2019 finally turned to be a good year for sounders. They stood second at the end of the Western Conference, 16 points behind leaders LAFC. The season had been tough with the Rave Greens only managing 16 wins out of 34 league matches. Toronto FC also had an almost similar run. They finished fourth, 14 points off the leaders New York City FC. Both teams were able to scratch out results to make it to the playoff finals.
Sounders make history
Seattle Sounders FC now joins the other five teams as the only multiple-time winner of the MLS Championship. The other five are LA Galaxy, San Jose Earthquakes, Sporting Kansas City, D.C. United and Houston Dynamo.
The first MLS title came back in 2016 with a win over against Toronto FC. The match was decided on penalties at the BMO Field in Toronto. The most successful team in MLS history still is LA Galaxy, which boasts of five title wins. The second most successful team is D.C. United, which has won four titles over the years.
The MLS Championship kicked off 23 years ago in 1996. The championship has seen over 13 different winners throughout the years. It continues to grow in popularity as more crowd numbers are recorded on match days.
The league is getting more competitive with new expansion clubs ready to make their mark. Seattle Sounders has, however, been able to stand their ground as the best newcomer. They have managed to feature in three out of the last four playoff finals. Sounders managed to pull two wins out of the three.