Just hours after Seattle Sounders owner Adrian Hanaur told the world that he regrets that his team has too much passion, word has come down from U.S. Soccer that the governing body of the U.S. Open Cup will hold a hearing next week to review the incidents from the Portland Timbers 3-1 win over the Sounders at Starfire on Tuesday. At the same time, MLS announced that Clint Dempsey -- who took the referee's notebook and tore it up, earning his red card in the match -- would be suspended for three matches for his action.
The U.S. Soccer hearing may cover Dempsey's infamous actions during the match, but will certainly cover both Sounders red cards and potentially Sigi Schmid's decision to leave the pitch before the match had concluded, throw a corner flag, and make post-game comments that included indicating he left because he wanted to choke the referee.
Dempsey's punishment appears to be lighter than many were expecting given the phrasing of the rule he broke, but MLS refers to the suspension in their press release as "significent". The three game suspensions, which prevents Dempsey from playing in any national team games while he is serving it, makes Dempsey eligible to play against just in time for the Gold Cup this summer.
Beyond a possible Open Cup meeting next year, the main impact of these suspensions from a Timbers point of view is that the Sounders will be missing Dempsey for the two teams' 6/28 match at Providence Park as he serves the final game of his suspension. Word from Seattle is that Obafemi Martins will miss between three and six weeks as he recovers from the groin injury that he suffered against the Timbers as well, leaving the Sounders without two of their top players for the rivalry match.