Xavier Arreaga, Alex Roldan and Brad Smith to join Ecuador, El Salvador and Australia, respectively, for September FIFA World Cup Qualifiers; Cristian Roldan and Raúl Ruidíaz call-ups previously announced
SEATTLE, WASH. – Three additional Sounders FC players have been called into international duty for upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. Xavier Arreaga, Alex Roldan and Brad Smith are set to report to Ecuador, El Salvador and Australia, respectively, joining Cristian Roldan (United States) and Raúl Ruidíaz (Peru), who were previously announced last week.
Arreaga, 26, looks to build on an established national team career with Ecuador, already having 12 caps – all starts – under his belt. Arreaga has played in six matches during Ecuador’s 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifying campaign so far and scored a goal in a 6-1 win over Colombia. La Tri is set to play three matches in this round of qualifiers against Paraguay on September 2, Chile on September 5 and Uruguay on September 9. The Ecuadorian has scored two goals in 16 appearances for the Rave Green this year.
Alex Roldan, 25, earns his second career call-up for El Salvador, previously getting the nod for the team’s 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup tournament run. He scored a goal in his first appearance with the squad, a 2-0 win over Guatemala in the group stage. Roldan went on to appear in all four matches for the Central American side during the tournament, starting two. El Salvador is scheduled to play the United States on September 2, Honduras on September 5 and Canada on September 8. He has started 18 matches for Sounders FC during its 2021 campaign, scoring one goal.
Smith, 27, continues his international career for Australia, where he has logged 22 caps, including two starts in 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, both of which were victories. Smith had previously appeared in 12 matches (11 starts) during the Socceroos’ 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifying campaign. Australia is scheduled to play China on September 2 and Vietnam on September 7. Smith has started 15 matches for the Rave Green this year, scoring three goals.
Despite a 2-0 home loss to Portland on Sunday, Seattle remains in first place in the Western Conference with 42 points (12-4-6) heading into the international break. Brian Schmetzer’s side returns to action on Saturday, September 11 against Minnesota United FC at Lumen Field (2:00 p.m. PT / JOEtv, Prime Video, Univision, 950 KJR AM, El Rey 1360 AM).