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Soccer players never get tired of playing the game.

That’s what this page is all about.

Where your FIRST TOUCH SOCCER book ends, the FREE KICK page begins.

It’s a chance for you to learn more about the Sounders … and for me to talk about some of the great stories I couldn’t squeeze into the book.

Scroll down to get the latest news … and to learn more about American soccer. And check out some of the cool collectibles I have in my home.

If you have any questions about my work, please EMAIL me and I’ll be happy to answer them.

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Team Spirit Extras

Stefan Frei’s 2016 MLS championship ring.
Photo by Stefan Frei

 

What’s up with the Seattle Sounders

May 23, 2017: The Sounders received their 2016 championship rings in a private ceremony. The rings are made of white gold and include 38 diamonds.

     
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MLS Cup
© Major League Soccer

 

The Sounders are members of Major League Soccer (MLS), the top soccer league in North America. MLS played its first season in 1996 with 10 teams. In 2017, MLS had 22 teams. Each club plays 34 games in the regular season, followed by the playoffs. The MLS schedule stretches from March to December (including the playoffs). Most pro leagues around he world begin in the fall and end in the spring, leaving time for top players to compete in summer tournaments, such as the World Cup.


Much like other U.S. sports leagues, the MLS clubs with the best records compete in postseason playoffs. The winner of each conference advances to the MLS Cup, the league’s one-game championship final.

 

     
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Freddie Ljungberg
© The Upper Deck Company

 

Team Spirit Extras

Brad Evans
© Topps, Inc.

 

More treasures from the author’s collection!


Freddie Ljungberg — Forward
2009–2010
Freddie Ljungberg was one of the top players in the Premier League with Arsenal F.C. He gave the Sounders great leadership and got more All-Star votes from MLS fans than any player in 2009.


Fredy Montero — Forward
2009–2012
Fredy Montero joined Seattle in 2009 and led the team in goals in the club’s first season. He was named MLS Newcomer of the Year. Montero led the Sounders to victory in the U.S. Open Cup three years in a row.


Osvaldo Alonso — Midfielder
2009–
Few midfielders have made their mark on defense the way Osvaldo Alonso did when he joined the Sounders. No one on the club played more—or played harder—than the Cuban stars.


Brad Evans — Midfielder
2009–
Whether playing midfielder or on the back line, Brad Evans had a reputation as a dependable defensive “stopper.” He starred for Seattle and for the U.S. national team.


Eddie Johnson— Forward
2012–2013
Eddie Johnson was sensational during his two seasons in Seattle. He scored 23 times in 49 matches, including a huge number of headers. The veteran striker was named Comeback Player of the Year in 2012.

     
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Stefan Frei
© Topps, Inc.

 

 

Did You Know?

• The Sounders average over 40,000 fans per game—the most in MLS by almost 20,000 and one of the Top 30 figures of any club in the world.

• One of the club’s owners is comedian Drew Carey, host of the TV game show The Price Is Right.

• The Sounders won the Heritage Cup four times between 2010 and 2016. The Heritage Cup is a two-match tournament between the Sounders and San Jose Earthquakes.

• The play of the game in the 2016 MLS Cup was made by goalkeeper Stefan Frei. He stopped a point-blank shot by Jozy Altidore of Toronto FC in extra time to keep the game tied 0–0. Seattle went on to win on penalty kicks.

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© 2018 by Norwood House Press. Team Spirit® iand First Touch Soccer® are registered trademarks of Norwood House Press.