Seriously, how great was Jordan Morris last night?
Battling a stomach virus (or maybe it was food poisoning), a bad hamstring, altitude, and Jermaine Jones, the rookie pulled out a gritty, clutch goal and an overall strong performance to put Seattle in the MLS Cup. It was the kind of stuff that new USMNT coach Bruce Arena surely liked to see– with grit, heart and skill on full display. Morris reminded me a bit of Brian McBride–that was the type of performance you’d see from him.
Morris looked winded early on, but he kept chugging. He took a nasty hit after scoring the game’s only goal, and hobbled off looking like he was done, but he came right back out there after yelling at his dad–Seattle’s team doctor–while he was checking for ligament damage.
All this after Morris scored in the first leg of the Western Conference tie, in a game where he wasn’t even supposed to play because of the hamstring issue.
Now, he’ll have a couple weeks to rest up and get healthy for the MLS Cup. Montreal carries a 3-2 lead into Toronto Wednesday night–if Montreal holds on, the game is in Seattle. If Toronto wins, the Reds get to host–potentially putting three USMNT stars in the MLS Cup–Morris, along with Toronto’s Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore. And we can’t forget Clint Dempsey, who won’t be playing because of his heart issue (barring a miracle), but will no doubt be pulling for his Sounders teammates.
Right now I’d rate Morris behind Bobby Wood and Altidore as far as our forwards go, but not far off. Another great performance on Dec. 10–especially if he gets the chance to do it opposite Jozy–and we might see Morris get an expanded role under Arena for the January camp, and when the Hex starts up again in March.
Now, if he can just get that left foot going…