Seattle shows their scarves | Sounders FC

Joshua Trujillo/Seattle Post-Intelligencer

What a night! Wish I could have been there. My husband and son were (having signed up for season tickets via their Seahawk seats the minute the opportunity was presented). Even my BFF (you know, the one who hates sports) was there…

The energy and passion certainly came through on TV and it was evident even to the national broadcasters that the fans in the Emerald City were totally captivated by their new sports darlings. Kudos to the ownership group for getting this whole thing off to such a rousing start – here’s to more great games and good times to come now that “the world” has come to Seattle.

Joshua Trujillo/Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Joshua Trujillo/Seattle Post-Intelligencer

“Having spent my whole career in Europe, I was worried about being let down — why come home for this?” said a beaming Kasey Keller, the goalie from Olympia who stepped down to Major League Soccer. “But there’s probably not a better atmosphere for soccer in America.”

Sounders coach Sigi Schmid reported that midfielder Brad Evans suggested that the team develop hand signals because of the crowd noise.

“I’ve never heard of that,” he said, “in any MLS city.”

For a rookie outfit in its debutante ball, the night was about as glorious a stimulus package as could have been federally devised. The Sounders became only the second expansion franchise to win its opener.

“A lot of the players on the New York team are extremely envious of what we have here,” said Keller, who didn’t have to deal with a shot on goal in the first half, then made a couple of dramatic saves in the second half.

In fact, it appears the Sounders did the game and the production so well that they have become almost instantly the template for the rest of the league.

“This team is raising the bar for what our teams could achieve,” Don Garber, MLS commissioner, gushed at halftime in the press box. “There’s a belief by some that the sport has to base itself in cities with large Hispanic communities. But Seattle is an active international city, with a diverse population and large youth soccer base and a little less (sports market) competition than in other cities.

“We have to learn from this.”

Looks like they will get the opportunity to do just that. Prior to the game, it was announced that Vancouver will have a team in 2011 and later today a similar announcement is expected from Portland.

You go Soccer.

And oh btw ~ Sounders 3 | Red Bulls nil