Preview: Seattle Sounders vs. Minnesota United – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday’s Major League Soccer clash between Seattle Sounders and Minnesota United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

The Seattle Sounders will put their perfect home record against Minnesota United on the line when both teams meet on Sunday at Lumen Field.

It will be the second meeting between them in the 2022 Major League Soccer season with The Rave Green winning the opening fixture back in April, 2-1.

Match preview

Seattle Sounders forward Raul Ruidiaz (9) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal during the first half against the New York City FC at Red Bull Arena on April 13, 2022© Reuters

One of the most consistent franchises in MLS regular season play have been anything but that in 2022, with the Sounders currently tied with the Vancouver Whitecaps for the worst record in the league.

They began this month by making history, becoming the first Major League Soccer team to capture the CONCACAF Champions League (CCL) under its current format, though we have not seen that same kind of success domestically at the moment.

Seattle only have seven points thus far, their worst start after eight games to an MLS campaign since joining the league in 2009.

Whether it is fatigue, a championship hangover or something else, it is very unusual to see Brian Schmetzer‘s side struggling domestically as much as they are.

They are currently on their longest MLS losing streak since 2019 (three games), while they were also eliminated from the U.S. Open Cup this week, losing in a thrilling shootout, 10-9, to the San Jose Earthquakes after the match ended 2-2.

A year ago, The Rave Green had the joint-best defensive unit in the regular season, conceding only 33 goals, but so far this year, they have already allowed more than one-third of that total (13), and there are still 26 matches to play.

Because of their previous CCL fixtures, they have plenty of games in hand on teams above them, so there is time for the Sounders to make up the seven points that they need to climb back into a playoff position.

What has been missing in the early portion of the year has been a reaction when facing adversity, failing to score four times this season when going behind, though they showed plenty of resiliency on Wednesday at the U.S. Open Cup, coming back from two goals down in the second half before losing on penalties.

Minnesota United celebrate after forward Luis Amarilla (9) scored a goal against the New York Red Bulls during the second half at Red Bull Arena on March 13, 2022© Reuters

Over in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Minnesota United have failed to carry their offensive output from late April into this month, going goalless in both of their MLS May fixtures after ending the previous month with eight goals in their final three games.

The Minnesota attack have been average at best throughout most of 2022, currently ranked 22nd in expected goals from open play.

Penetrating the Sounders defence at Lumen Field has proven to be exceedingly difficult for Adrian Heath and his team, who have been shut out in their three previous visits to the Pacific Northwest, failing to find the back of the net there since 2018.

Their preparation and energy level to begin matches has not been a problem, although The Loons have either squandered points in the latter stages of a game or waited until the second half to score.

Minnesota have conceded three goals beyond the 80th minute in their previous two domestic affairs, with Los Angeles FC netting twice to win 2-0, while a 93rd-minute strike from Brandon Vazquez a week ago gave FC Cincinnati a 1-0 triumph.

After earning a win and a draw in their opening two road fixtures of the season, they have dropped back-to-back contests away from home, firing a total of four efforts on target without scoring against Austin FC (1-0) and The Black and Gold.

The Loons have done a decent job when it comes to frustrating opponents and closing off space in midfield, though once their opponents are able to get through that line, Minnesota have often left their goalkeeper hanging out to dry.

Seattle Sounders Major League Soccer form:

Seattle Sounders form (all competitions):

Minnesota United Major League Soccer form:

Minnesota United form (all competitions):

Team News

Seattle Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer looks on after the Concacaf Champions League semifinal match against the New York City FC at Lumen field on April 6, 2022© Reuters

Jimmy Medranda and Fredy Montero both tallied in the second half on Wednesday to erase a 2-0 deficit, however, reserve goalkeeper Stefan Cleveland missed his penalty kick, allowing Quakes keeper Matt Bersano to fire home the winner from the spot.

Without Joao Paulo, who has a right ACL tear, this team have struggled in their build-up play from the back, while Xavier Arreaga is out due to concussion protocol and Dylan Teves has a right hamstring strain.

First-choice keeper Stefan Frei has only conceded twice in five home games against The Loons since joining Seattle, Will Bruin has tallied three goals in past fixtures versus Minnesota, while the hero of their CCL triumph, Raul Ruidiaz, continues to seek his first goal of the MLS campaign.

An own-goal from Brent Kallman led to The Loons defeat against Seattle in early April, while Abu Danladi and Emanuel Reynoso both scored at the U.S. Open Cup this week as they advanced to the Round of 16 in that competition, beating the Colorado Rapids 2-1.

Hassani Dotson and Patrick Weah are both out with knee injuries, while Romain Metanire is still nursing a thigh issue.

Dayne St. Clair has been nothing short of spectacular for Minnesota this season after reclaiming the starting position from Tyler Miller, with the Canadian keeper currently in the top-five when it comes to stops (36), while he has an 83.7 save percentage, the third-highest in MLS.

Seattle Sounders possible starting lineup:
Frei; Tolo, Arreaga, Cissoko, A. Roldan; Rusnak, Rowe; Morris, Lodeiro, C. Roldan; Ruidiaz

Minnesota United possible starting lineup:
St. Clair; Fisher, Boxall, Dibassy, Lawrence; Trapp, Arriaga, Danladi, Reynoso, Lod; Amarilla

SM words green background

We say: Seattle Sounders 2-0 Minnesota United

Their record may not look impressive, but without the CCL or U.S. Open Cup to think about anymore, Schmetzer and his side should be laser-focused on turning this campaign around and they have enough experience in these situations to know how to recover.

Even though The Loons have seven more points than Seattle, Heath does not have the kind of depth that the Sounders possess, and we expect this match could be the start of a turnaround campaign for The Rave Green.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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