Galaxy, who progressed after a 2-2 draw on aggregate, will meet
the New England Revolution in the final and will be looking for a
record fifth MLS title at their own stadium on Dec. 7.
In freezing temperatures in Seattle, the Sounders, trailing 1-0 from
the first leg in Los Angeles, opened the scoring in the 27th minute
when a Clint Dempsey effort fell to Brad Evans, who slid the ball
home from close range.
Five minutes later former Fulham striker Dempsey put Seattle 2-0 up
with a shot that took a slight deflection and snuck under Galaxy
goalkeeper Jaime Penedo, who will be disappointed he failed to
smother the ball.
The artificial surface made it difficult for both sides to keep
possession but there was no shortage of action or tension after the
Galaxy striker Robbie Keane went close with a curling shot that
Sounders' keeper Stefan Frei pushed wide, but L.A. got the decisive
goal in the 54th minute when midfielder Juninho crashed home a
first-time effort from 20 yards that went in off the post.
This is the first year that MLS has included the away goals rule in
their playoffs, although that aspect would have been irrelevant if
not for some fine work from Frei, who did well to keep out a Landon
Donovan shot and a header from Stefan Ishizaki
Roared on by a 46,758 crowd, Seattle threw themselves into a series
of late attacks but when their best chance fell to Dempsey, he
[to top of second column]
The result means that Donovan, who has announced he will retire at
the end of the season, has the perfect farewell opportunity with the
title-decider at his home field.
"I'm excited and so proud of our guys," the league's all-time top
scorer told ESPN.
"After a bad 10 minutes in the first half, what character to
respond. We have been at Juninho to score all year and we deserved
The Sounders, who had the league's best regular season record, have
been unable to reach an MLS Cup final in the six seasons they have
been in the league.
(Reporting By Simon Evans; Editing by Peter Rutherford)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.