The Seattle Sounders will go into the 2014 season with the belief that anything less than an MLS title is not success. But they'll do it with a completely overhauled roster, the result of the slide at the end of 2013. The question of whether changes were needed stretched from the bottom of the roster all the way up to coach Sigi Schmid.
Eventually, general manager Adrian Hanauer and majority owner Joe Roth decided keeping Schmid and remodeling the team was the path Seattle would travel. It wasn't a complete overhaul. Midfielder Brad Evans is still around. Midfielder Osvaldo Alsonso was rewarded with a designated player contract, and Seattle is about to get its first full season with Clint Dempsey on the roster.
But the names that are gone are notable. U.S. national team striker Eddie Johnson is now with D.C. United. Defensive center backs Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Patrick Ianni are gone. Midfielder Mauro Rosales is now with Chivas USA. Goalkeeper Michael Gspurning is back in Europe. It's a completely new look for Seattle and only success on the field will determine whether the right choices were made.
March 4, 2014