SEATTLE – Marco Pappa, Chad Barrett and Obafemi Martins each scored second-half goals and the Seattle Sounders ended Real Salt Lake’s season-opening unbeaten streak at 12 with a 4-0 victory Saturday in a game between the two top teams in Major League Soccer.
Gonzalo Pineda also scored on a first-half penalty kick for the Sounders (9-3-2). Pappa’s goal was his first of the season. Barrett scored for the second straight game, giving him three goals for the year. Martins tallied his sixth.
While Seattle won its MLS-high fifth straight home match, Salt Lake (6-1-6) fell for the first time, missing a chance to set an MLS record for longest unbeaten streak to start the year.
Los Angeles (12-0 in 1996 and 10-0-2 in 2010) and Kansas City (10-0-2 in 2000) previously had 12-game season-opening undefeated streaks.
“We talked about it before the game that we wanted to break the streak,” Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid said. “But mainly, we talked about us being No. 1 going against No. 2, and we have to show what we’re made of.
“As a group, we’re maturing, and to be able to step into a game between first place and second place and win and have a convincing result speaks volumes for our character.”
Pineda’s penalty was set up when Lamar Neagle was shoulder charged in the back inside the RSL box. Pineda then beat goalkeeper Jeff Attinella to put the Sounders up 1-0 in the 42nd minute.
Pappa’s goal in the 55th minute came directly off of a 23-yard free kick. The midfielder blasted a left-footed shot over RSL’s six-man wall and beyond the reach of an outstretched Attinella.
Barrett made it 3-0 in the 62nd minute when he finished off a smooth Sounders counter attack orchestrated by Martins and Neagle.
Martins scored in the 90th minute.
With the upcoming World Cup shaking up MLS rosters, both teams were without key international players. The Sounders were missing leading goal scorer Clint Dempsey (eight goals), while RSL was without midfielder Kyle Beckerman and goalie Nick Rimando.