Seattle Sounders 2022 Preview

Atlanta 2020 Preview

Previous Year Recap

Last year may have been a major disappointment for the Sounders on the field, but it was a banger year for Sounders players in fantasy. The switch to a 5-back defense increasingly benefited both Alex Roldan and Brad Smith while Nouhou and Yeimar Gomez Andrade produced MLS All Star level stats. The loss of Jordan Morris and Nicolas Lodiero to injury meant Brazilian Joa Paolo picked up MVP caliber points each week and Raul Ruidiaz came within touching distance of the Golden Boot. Budget options like Kellyn Rowe, Freddy Montero and Josh Atencio also shined during stretches of the season.

Fantasy Players to Watch

Keepers

While Stefan Frei (7.0) is fairly reliable, he’s expensive and not necessarily known for keeping shutouts. As his backline adjusts back to a 4 back from the 5 back of 2021, I’m cautious with Frei as a fantasy starter. 

Defenders

As referenced, Seattle is going back to a 4-man backline, which most likely means the offensive bonus points won’t be quite as high for the wingbacks of Alex Roldan (7.0) and Nouhou (6.5). While both of these players have the ability to get upfield and make key defensive plays, I’m unsure that either player will reproduce their hot start of the 2021 season. I expect both Xavier Arreaga and Yeimar Gomez Andrade (both 6.5) to be similar to their point production of the previous season, but keep in mind that Arreaga is always one untucked jersey away from being carded.

Midfielders

If the Sounders can stay healthy, this should be a banger year for their fantasy point production. However, with the addition of Albert Rusnak (9.5) it might be difficult to figure out exactly where the points will come from. Nicolas Lodeiro (9.0) is still working his way back to full fitness after last season’s injury and Joa Paulo (9.0) will most likely sit in a deeper role this year than he did last season. While preseason games led fans to believe Rusnak would be taking over corners and freekicks, he seems to be sharing the load with Lodeiro. Lastly, Cristian Roldan feels slightly overpriced at 9.0 as he’ll likely be predominantly central this season instead of on the wing. 

Budget midfielders are plentiful in the Sounders lineup, however, as Kellyn Rowe (6.0) and Leo Chu (4.5) should both see minutes off the bench. Many fans expect Chu to compete for a starting role, but I’m not entirely sold on that. 

Forwards

Jordan Morris (8.5) is back and Sounders fans are rejoicing. He often slides into the lone striker role when needed and still can really turn on the speed down that wing, even after his second ACL injury. Raul Ruidiaz is the big name at striker, however, coming in at 9.5 after 2021 was his best goal scoring year since joining Seattle. I’m hesitant with Ruidiaz to start the season however, as he’s been experiencing hamstring tightness in the opening CCL matches. If he can stay healthy and repeat his form of last season, he’ll be a must own for home matches.

Fantasy Expectations

Cautious but optimistic should be the vibe for Sounders players in fantasy lineups to start the season. Traditionally, Seattle doesn’t always have the hottest start and that reflects directly to fantasy points. However, the Sounders come into this season with an incredibly stacked lineup of proven fantasy point producers. From possible budget starters like Freddy Montero and Leo Chu to pricy-yet-proven point producers like Raul Ruidiaz, Alex Roldan and Albert Rusnak there’s someone for everyone from the Sounders lineup this season.

Potential Starting XI

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