The New York Red Bulls are in Seattle for Week 3 of MLS 2017. RBNY is bringing a long regular-season unbeaten streak to the game; the Sounders are bringing MLS Cup.
This is the marquee match-up of the week, though this is a new season and last year's reputations ought to have been cast aside in the off-season. But in the early stages of any campaign in MLS, there is little to go on but how the team's performed the year before. So expectations are generally that both these sides will prove to be above-average in 2017, because that is what they proved to be in 2016.
Of course, both struggled last year. RBNY had a disastrous 1-6 start to MLS 2016, but recovered to top the Eastern Conference. The Sounders were in a profound slump for about half the season, but rallied and re-organized after head coach Brian Schmetzer was appointed in July.
Schmetzer looked a lot like a stop-gap, who would guide the Sounders through the tail-end of a bad year before an appropriate candidate to fill Sigi Schmid's shoes could be found. But the stand-in took the team all the way to its first MLS Cup. A Seattle man with long-term ties to the Sounders, it would seem the head coach the club was looking for was under its nose the whole time.
In 2017, Schmetzer should get a full season to build on what he achieved last year and really shape the team to his liking. The Sounders only managed a point from their first two games of the new season, but those were on the road. They're at home now, and will be keen to get up and running with their first first league win of the year.
RBNY will have its work cut out containing an opponent eager for three points, buoyed by a large crowd.
Per livesoccertv.com, here's where to find the game: