Seattle Sounders Deliver MLS Cup To Record-Setting Crowd With 3-1 Win Over Toronto

Michael Bradley's not getting that $6.5 million guaranteed.

The Seattle Sounders captured their second MLS Cup in four years by defeating Toronto FC 3-1 at CenturyLink Field on Sunday afternoon.

The Sounders scored three second half goals to secure the victory in front of the largest sporting event crowd in CenturyLink Field history — 69,274 roared their approval when a deflected Kelvin Leerdam effort gave Seattle the lead in the 57th minute before Víctor Rodríguez’s cool finish doubled the advantage in the 76th. Raúl Ruidíaz cemented the club’s second-ever title with a strike of his own in the 90th.

The only positive for Toronto was that a late Jozy Altidore consolation goal saved them from the worst margin of defeat in MLS Cup history. 

Omar Gonzalez returned to the starting lineup for Toronto to give the team a boost in defense, but Altidore had to make due with a spot on the bench as he continued his recovery from a quad complaint. For Seattle, all the prematch noise concerned the scene that supporters were creating in and around the Link.

The first half was edged by Toronto, but Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei had some how managed to grow his MLS Cup legend by the sound of the halftime whistle. 

And fortune favored Seattle on the opening goal in the 57th minute. With the Sounders attacking, Ruidíaz picked out Leerdam in the area. The defending from Nicolas Benezet was abysmal, and although Chris Mavinga got over quickly to provide cover, Leerdam’s effort took a nasty deflection off Justin Morrow to cue the celebrations. 

The second goal, coming less than 20 minutes later, was much more beautiful. The layoff from Nicolás Lodeiro was perfect and Rodríguez made no mistake with his curled finish. 

Toronto desperately searched for a way back into the match, but Seattle iced the game in the 90th minute after Gustav Svensson hoofed one into the path of Ruidíaz. The Peruvian took advantage of some hesitancy between Mavinga and Quentin Westberg to punish the visitors.

Toronto finally beat Frei when Alejandro Pozuelo found Altidore for the header.

But “The Trilogy” ultimately goes to Seattle, and Brian Schmetzer joins Bruce Arena, Sigi Schmid, Frank Yallop and Dominic Kinnear among coaches with multiple MLS Cup wins.