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Sounders-Chivas USA Preview

AP - Sports

Fredy Montero and Eddie Johnson continue to provide plenty of goals for the Seattle Sounders.

The two have combined for eight goals over the Sounders' last six games ahead of Saturday night's road matchup with Chivas USA.

Both Johnson and Montero got on the board last Saturday in a 2-0 home win over Vancouver. Together they have 19 goals this season, even though coach Sigi Schmid does not start both players all the time.

"I always get a special joy when we win a game and we get a Fredy Montero and an Eddie Johnson goal," Schmid told the Sounders' official website. "I think it substantiates what we're trying to do with those two guys. When you start adding it up now, they are among the three or four best combinations in the league in terms of goal production."

Montero has scored in three straight games - the last two as a substitute. Johnson has three goals in his last four games.

Chivas USA (7-9-6) insists it will not be employing any special plans to defend Montero and Johnson.

"You have your matchups, obviously there's a sense of urgency when certain people get the ball, you want to close down their space as a collective unit and sometimes individual people need to win their battles as well," Chivas defender James Riley said. "We'll give the guys their individual matchups and obviously they have to come out on top of that."

Seattle (11-6-7) is in third place in the Western Conference and has played fewer games than the teams ahead of it - San Jose and Real Salt Lake.

The first MLS meeting between these teams this year was a 1-1 draw May 26 in which David Estrada scored for Seattle after Juan Agudelo gave Chivas the lead.

That remains the only 2012 goal in league play for Agudelo. His struggles are part of the reason Chivas has the worst offense in MLS with 15 goals from 22 games.

"We're playing a desperate team and anything can happen so you can't take them lightly and it's not a team that - maybe they haven't scored goals - but they still have good players and guys that can really get after you and make you pay if you make mistakes," Seattle defender Jeff Parke said.

Juan Pablo Angel leads Chivas with four goals, including the tying tally in the 83rd minute last Saturday in a 1-1 draw at Colorado.

One point wasn't enough for Chivas, which is in seventh place in the West with 27 - 10 out of a playoff spot.

"In our situation, we look at every game now as a game where we want to get three points," coach Robin Fraser told Chivas' official website.

Estrada and midfielder Andy Rose are the only notable absences for Seattle this weekend. Schmid has indicated he may make changes in the opener of a stretch of three games in nine days, including next Thursday's trip to face Trinidadian club Caledonia AIA in the CONCACAF Champions League.

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