Seattle Sounders are confident they can compete with the best in the world as they get set to face Egyptian side Al Ahly in the second round of the Club World Cup. Awaiting the winners is the 14X Champions League / European Cup winners Real Madrid.
Sounders forward Jordan Morris old BBC World Service’s World Football:
“We feel we can step on the field with anyone and compete.”
“You go into every tournament with confidence. We fully understand the challenges of each team and how good they are.
“Obviously, the quality of a team like Real Madrid means it will be incredibly difficult but we are confident in our ability and the talent we have.
“Our goal is to go there and focus on each individual opponent but you are only three games away from winning a trophy and that is all the inspiration you need.”
The Sounders are the first MLS team to qualify for the Club World Cup, after beating Mexican side Pumas UNAM in the two-legged final of the 2022 Concacaf Champions League.
“It is incredibly special,” continued Morris, who was part of the USA squad for the recent World Cup in Qatar.
“For this group, this club to be the first MLS team to play in this tournament it means a ton. We are super proud to represent Seattle and the league in Morocco.”
The Sounders’ opponents on Friday, Al Ahly, beat New Zealand side Auckland City 3-0 in the first round of the tournament on Wednesday.
Morris said his side were taking it “game by game” but could not hide his excitement at the possibility of a semi-final showdown with 14-time European champions and four-time Club World Cup winners Real in Tangier on 8 February.
“To have the opportunity to play Real Madrid would be incredibly important,” he added. “We know the world-class talent they have, the world-class team that they are. To be able to go out and measure ourselves against them would be really exciting and a really cool experience.
“It was fun watching the Champions League final last year, knowing we would potentially get to play one of those teams.
“But it is a game-by-game thing for us, focusing on what we can do to win that first game and then hopefully we get to play Madrid.”