Sounders expected to be at full strength against Real Salt Lake

Sounders expected to be at full strength against Real Salt Lake

Sounders expected to be at full strength against Real Salt Lake

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by ELIZABETH WILEY / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on September 12, 2013 at 11:27 AM

The Sounders will open up seating to full capacity for their match against Real Salt Lake Friday that has big implications for Seattle.

A win would give the club the lead in the race for the Supporters' Shield. Salt Lake is currently in first place.

The Sounders will be back at full strength and are playing as well as they have all season. They have won seven of their last eight matches, and their current four-match winning streak is tied for the longest in the MLS this season.

Friday's match could also mark the first time Clint Dempsey, Eddie Johnson and Obafemi Martins are on the pitch together. Martins returned from an ankle injury in the match against Chicago and Dempsey and Martins will return from international duty.

The Real Salt Lake match was selected for full-capacity seating as part of a four pack available to fans.

In August, a crowd of more than 67,000 cheered the Sounders to a 1-0 victory over rivals Portland.

The 67,385 fans marked the second highest attendance of any MLS game behind the first home game for the Los Angeles Galaxy in 1996 that drew 69,255. It was the largest of any crowd in Seattle, passing the 66,452 that saw the Sounders and Timbers play last October and besting a friendly against Manchester United in 2011.

Seattle is undefeated and outscores their opponents 15-3 when playing in front of a crowd of more than 50,000 at home.

The club encourages fans to arrive early Friday as more than 52,000 tickets have already been purchased. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and the first kick is set to take place at 7 p.m.

Pre-game activities in Occidental Park in Pioneer Square begin at 5:15 p.m. and include performances from local band Ivan and Alyosha.

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