Matthew J. Pentz, Class of 2008…Seattle Sports Writer and Book Author

ECW Press is pleased to announce the forthcoming publication of *The Sound and the Glory: How the Seattle Sounders Finally Conquered Major League Soccer — and Showed MLS How to Win Over America *by Matt Pentz, which will be released on March 5, 2019.

*Matt Pentz* is the Sounders FC reporter for The Athletic Seattle.  His work has also appeared in *The New York Times*, the *Guardian*, *The Ringer, and ESPN, among others. As an award-winning beat reporter at the *Seattle Times*, he covered the Sounders’ historic run to their first MLS Cup championship. This is his first book.

This behind-the-scenes look at the 2016 Seattle Sounders from award-winning journalist Matt Pentz examines why soccer has languished in North America, how that’s changing now and why the sport’s heartbeat beats loudest in the Pacific Northwest.

A straight line can be drawn between Seattle’s entry into Major League Soccer in 2009 and the league’s leaps and bounds of progress in the years since. The Sounders were an instant sensation, attracting crowd sizes unlike any MLS had ever seen. Seattle averaged more than 42,000 fans per home game in 2016, most of any soccer team in the Western Hemisphere and more than juggernauts like Chelsea and AC Milan overseas. Perhaps more importantly, Seattle’s soccer club outdrew the Mariners, the Major League Baseball franchise, whose stadium sits right next door.

For all its early, consistent success, however, the Sounders had yet to actually win the league championship. There was a sense that its grand project was stagnating. Buzz around the city had flat lined, its sports fans tiring of the team that reached the postseason annually only to fall short every year. In order to reach the ambitious goals the club set for itself midway through the 2016 season, and to drag MLS forward by extension, the Sounders needed the jolt of a championship.

 To get there would require tumult a club previously built on stability had never known, a clash of egos, a power struggle over the present and future of the franchise and firing the only coach Seattle’s modern era had ever known. *The Sound and the Glory* provides an inside look at the Sounders’ 2016 season, all the way to a title run so unlikely it could have hardly been scripted.

Note:  The Sound and the Glory is available on Amazon!



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