MLS Preview: Sounders expect Dempsey, Martins return
Seattle Sounders expect to welcome back star striking duo Clint Dempsey and Obafemi Martins as they look to bounce back against struggling FC Dallas on Saturday.
Dempsey and Martins both missed last week's 1-0 loss at Sporting Kansas City, with the former attending the birth of his fourth child, while the latter was recovering from surgery to a broken nose.
Martins trained with a mask on Thursday and Sounders coach Sigi Schmid expects the Nigerian to play at least part of Seattle's home match against Dallas.
"He [Martins] got through the practice today, went through the whole practice, you know, had the mask on," Schmid said.
"So again we'll see how he feels tomorrow, it's a day-by-day process but I think his likelihood of playing is very good."
Seattle - the Western Conference leaders - suffered their first defeat in five MLS games last week in the absence of Dempsey and Martins, but Schmid's men should be confident against Dallas, with the Texans in the midst of a four-game winless run.
Dallas drew 0-0 at San Jose Earthquakes last week.
But although the Sounders are likely to welcome back their key forwards, Schmid will have to do without Chad Barrett (hamstring) and Marco Pappa (international duty), while Osvaldo Alonso (hamstring) is doubtful.
Eastern Conference leaders DC United will travel to Orlando City on Sunday, with the expansion club looking to stretch their unbeaten run to four matches.
Orlando, who sit fourth in the East's standings, defeated Chicago Fire 3-2 last week and will hope to capitalise on DC's 2-1 loss in their most recent fixture.
New England Revolution will aim to snap a six-match losing streak when they host the Fire on Saturday, while Columbus Crew take on Los Angeles Galaxy and New York City will welcome Montreal Impact to Yankee Stadium.