Coach Brian Schmetzer at Sounders parade: ‘Overcome with pride for Seattle’
Seattle Sounders FC players and fans marched to victory in the Sounders parade downtown Seattle on Tuesday afternoon following the team’s 2019 MLS Cup win on Sunday.
The crowd of thousands of lime green and dark blue-clad fans that surrounded Seattle Center was especially excited — the championship game against Toronto FC was not only the second MLS Cup win for the team in four years, but also the first to take place at home in the Emerald City.
Amidst all of the hoopla, Sounders Head Coach Brian Schmetzer made time to call KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson from the Sounders parade and thank him for his support.
“We’re having a good weekend in Seattle,” Schmetzer said, alluding to another blue and green athletic victory — the Seahawks’ Monday Night Football win against the San Francisco 49ers, a game that Schmetzer said he watched.
Dori expressed his appreciation for Schmetzer’s legacy as a hometown legend. A native of Lake City and graduate of the neighborhood’s Nathan Hale High School, Schmetzer returned to Seattle after playing professional soccer around the country to help make the Sounders the success they are.
“I love your story, I love that you’re a Nathan Hale guy — that’s coming from a Ballard [High School] beaver here — that you’ve been living your dream, your passion for soccer your whole life,” Dori said.
Despite the celebration afterwards, the buildup to the championship game was a stressful balance for Schmetzer, who was entirely focused on the goal at hand.
“It was a little overwhelming for me, to be honest … we as coaches, we were at work, we were trying to find a game plan, trying to fine-tune our training sessions, trying to get all that done,” he said. “It was mentally draining — and then the pressure of the game, the home team expecting to win, this massive crowd.”
But after the 3-1 victory against Toronto, Schmetzer was able to let himself sit back and enjoy the glory of a game well played.
“It’s a little overwhelming, but [I’m] certainly proud of Seattle, our organization, the city, the player, the fans — it’s been really fantastic … I was just overcome with the pride I have for the city, the players, the fans, and it’s just been great,” he said.
Listen to the Dori Monson Show weekday afternoons from 12-3 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.