Freddie Ljungberg to MLS Seattle Sounders?

One of my favorite Arsenal players of all time (and now washed up West Ham failure), Freddie Ljungberg, is reportedly coming to my home town Major League “Soccer” team, the Seattle Sounders.

Damnit!

I was really hoping for an excuse not to go to too many of their games. See, American Soccer, is, well, it’s f*cking lame. The players suck, the action is horrible, and the average fan’s idea of a good time is to bring a drum to the game and beat it mindlessly for 90 minutes (Mike, I’m talking about you). Or, better yet, bring one of those annoying horns to the game and blow it IN MY F*CKING EAR FOR 90 MINUTES. Add on to that morass of stupidity and suck the fact that the stadium the Sounders will be playing in (Qwest Field) for the next few years is easily the worst stadium to watch “soccer” in in the world. Why? American football stadiums are bad for “soccer” in general because American football teams are huge and thus require enormous sidelines to house their enormous teams full of enormous mouth breathers sucking down oxygen on the sidelines. The view is fine, but you are so far removed from the action that you feel like a spectator, instead of something like Highbury where you feel like you’re on the pitch.

Oh yeah, and the “field” is plastic which is horrible for any sport, except maybe women’s lacrosse.

And Qwest field seats 72,000 of which the Seattle Sounders will be lucky to get 20,000 at a game after the first few matches when everyone realizes that the matches suck and the atmosphere is horrible.

Can you see why I wasn’t excited to go?

The Sounders have been making a lot of noise about using their exception to sign a big name (Thierry Henry was linked at one time) and, according to the Swedish Television News 4 (which I imagine is the hottest television news broadcast in the world) Freddie Ljungberg is their man.

Damnit.

I like Freddie and I never got to see him play and washed up or not, he’ll probably tear apart the soft defenses of the MLS. So I guess that settles it, Doyle’s Public House in Tacoma is organizing a boozy bus-load of locals to go see every Sounders game, so I guess I’ll have to get a seat.

Save me a seat Russ, I’m coming to hell with the rest of you.

18 Comments on Freddie Ljungberg to MLS Seattle Sounders?

  1. Do you know if they will be keeping the gridiron lines on the pitch for the Sounders matches? There is noting, NOTHING more annoying about American soccer than when they play with the gridiron lines.

    I try to get out and support the local USL squad here in Minneapolis (the Thunder) – they have great youth programs which I don’t mind giving money to, and while the football blows, it is nice to see it in person at a professional level, but they play 50% of their homes on an American football field with the gridiron lines. Unwatchable!!

    (Also they don’t serve beer at the matches.)

    Whenever I turn on a NY Red Bull game I WEEP at the sight of the ugly ass field. Part of the beauty of the sport is the pitch. Americans you think would understand that.

    Anyhoo…

    From what I understand, “soccer” is big in Seattle, so I am surprised that they are not building a soccer specific stadium.

    That new one in Salt Lake is breathtaking.

  2. Hey Matt, the lines on the pitch are actually the color of the plastic so there’s nothing they can do to get rid of them.

    I read an article from not too long ago that the “grounds keeper” thinks he can fake something up to make them not as noticeable but that they will be on the pitch.

    Yes, “soccer” is pretty big around here I have no doubt the team will be a success and yes the plan is to build a “soccer” stadium.

    http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2008/Feb/28/plan-to-lure-seattle-sounders-build-nk-soccer/

    That article talks about Poulsbo and I’m not too sure how accurate that is, I heard something about building the stadium on Native land in Auburn or something.

    I thought.

    Dunno, but, yes the plan is to build a sports specific venue. Now, if we can just get them to outlaw noisemakers and teach the fans to sing songs!!!

    Hey, that will be fun, making up songs to sing on the bus…

  3. No lines. Season ticket sales will top 20,000. Downtown venue. Breathtaking European-styled roof. Football atmosphere with many pubs right off the street near the venue. Train access. Light rail access. Ljungberg quoted in Swedish press that ‘his body feels like new. He is so excited for a new beginning and a new challenge in Seattle.’

  4. @GoalSeattle.com

    No lines? Nice. And if you put 20,000 butts in the seats, than I will watch when they play on ESPN2 or FSC.

    The lack of atmosphere just kills the MLS experience…it’s like watching a match at Stamford Bridge or something. (ZING!)

  5. Are they going to ban drums and those ridiculous horns? Because the last thing I want is to spend 90 minutes listening to some jackass pounding a drum while some other jackass blows into one of those annoying horns.

  6. As for the lines, GoalSeattle, that’s the exact article I saw and read what the guy says:

    “That is a definite thing that we are striving to make sure that does not happen,” Wright said of football lines on the soccer field. “It has challenges, but that is one of the things that we’re working on. … That’s my preference, and what’s really nice is Tim Ruskell on the Seahawks football side: That was the first thing he said: ‘You can’t play with our football lines on there. We have to make sure that it’s done right.’

    “Well for a football guy to say you’ve got to make sure that it’s done right, that’s pretty neat and pretty cool. Our goal seriously is to never play a game with football lines on it. I would hate to see that happen. I’m as fervent about that as any longtime soccer person could be.”

    They WANT to make it happen, but that’s no guarantee that they will. I’ve also read another article where they are talking about having special chunks of plastic pitch to cover over the lines but that they might not be able to do it.

    Make no mistake, that is Seahawks stadium and Paul Allen isn’t going to let the Sounders do whatever they want to the field. If there’s the slightest hint that they will damage the pitch or make it ugly, it won’t happen.

    Also, I’ve thought of a song that we can all sing!

    (to the tune of “Louie, Louie” — Seattle’s unofficial theme song)

    Freddie, Freddie
    Ohh Ohhh get us a goal!
    AY AYA YA YI! OH
    Freddie, Freddie! OH BABY!
    GET US A GOAL!

    See, it’s that simple. Now, ban the drums and horns: say it’s a national security threat.

  7. The FO wants a dynamic supporters atmosphere at Qwest field. They have set aside sections 121, 122 and 123 as General Admission and designated area for Supporters Groups like the ECS (www.weareecs.com). Giant flags, banners, drums and tifo will all be present from kickoff in the supporters sections.

    Regarding the painting of the field. If you have watched any Seahawks home games this season, you will have noticed the endzone painting is very minimal compared to years past. It is simply “Seahawks” painted in with no blue filling in everywhere else. Why? because it is less work to remove the paint rather than it would have been in previous years.

    Also, keep in mind Soccer isn’t just a European sport. MLS supporters reflect this. You will find supporters groups with different styles and some that blend styles. You can look at Section 8 in Chicago as a good example of this. Also, La Barra Brava in DC.

    I think it is a shame for people not to support their local team no matter what level of play it is. You don’t have to have season tickets and go every game, but you should try to hit up a few in person each year and not trash them.

    Even for selfish reasons, if you want a top club in your hometown, you should help them along. Support them now so you can help them grow. Simply put, the more people watching in the stadium and on tv means more revenue for the team, which allows for the growth of the team and the league.

    FYI, The Sounders trip to Argentina went very well as you can read here.

    http://seattlesounders.net/Newsite98103/pressbox.php?section=news&ID=916
    http://seattlesounders.net/Newsite98103/pressbox.php?section=news&ID=917
    http://seattlesounders.net/Newsite98103/pressbox.php?section=news&ID=918

    The Sounders have made a very good impression down in Argentina which bodes will for the future of the organization. I get the feeling the Argentinians aren’t going to be trashing the level of play of the Sounders after this trip.

  8. Sorry, Andrew, I’m not going to mindlessly support a team just because of the proximity of the team to my current address. You’re seriously barking up the wrong tree if you think you’re going to change my mind by criticizing me for not supporting my “local club.” After all, I write an Arsenal blog… EVERY DAY.

    That whole “local club” thing is at best just a ploy and at worst (see my comments about Platini) simply nationalism.

    I will, however, go to see them simply because they (will) sign Freddie and because Freddie is still a huge reason why I became an Arsenal supporter and I want to support Freddie.

    As for noisemakers, I’m sorry to hear that noisemakers will be allowed. They are a distraction and in my opinion are the sign of people who don’t really support the club. After all, how much imagination does it take to bang a drum for 90 minutes?

    And yes, I agree that the Sounders and MLS are not European football and the fans are not like European fans. There are obviously good and bad things about that statement.

    One of the bad things is that any songs I start or chants I try to get started will be drowned out by some moron and his 10 cent plastic tube.

    I rather like my Freddie, Freddie song and I have been singing it all day. It could be the kind of thing that’s unique to Seattle and if you REALLY want to grow the club, make it unique and interesting; not just the same old stuff in a different jersey that I’m supposed to support just because we have a nearby zip code.

  9. Grats on a good signing. Freddie has experienced many problems with injuries lately but in his finest moments he is a worldclass player that always gives 110% on the pitch. Spent a few years as team-captain for the Swedish national team, absolutely one of our greatest players ever.

  10. Sounds like Timothy isn’t really a soccer/football fan. Grow up!I am also Arsenal fan and I realise that the mls isn’t the same quality, but that doesn’t mean you can’t go out and support your new local Sounders FC. Love the game and don’t bash something that you haven’t had a chance to be a part of. Seattle will be a great soccer town with or without you.

  11. Yeah, I’m not a real football fan… I just dedicate several hours every day to writing a football blog, I spend my vacation in London in the winter so that I can watch football, and I’ve seen just about every Arsenal football match they have played for the last three years.

    Just because I don’t support your team doesn’t mean that I’m not a football fan.

    Get over yourself.

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