I was down to my t-shirt during San Jose Earthquakes' 5-0 drubbing of Chivas yesterday, very much enjoying the sunny weather. Today, not so pleasant: rainy, windy and cold.
In fact, yesterday's starters spent today's training session indoors, doing their typical post-match regen workouts in the gym. The rest of the team, aside from injured players, did their regular warmups and played a short field scrimmage. During the short time we did see the team scrimmaging, we saw some nice goals from Brent Richards, Ryan Kawulok, and Eric Alexander.
The list of injured players still includes Sal Zizzo and Darlington Nagbe, who spent the session jogging around the pitch, with occasional sprints. At this point Zizzo isn't well enough yet to beat Nagbe in a foot race, try as he might to pull back on Nagbe's jacket. As encouraging as it has been to see him in the stadium and in good spirits, I'd say Zizzo won't be back on the pitch for
quite a while a few more weeks.
It should be noted that Eric Alexander was not counted among the injured players; Spencer's decision to keep him out of yesterday's exhibition because of a hamstring pull appears to have been purely precautionary.
We didn't get to watch the scrimmage for very long, since we left the training pitch early to hold interviews indoors. The team was about to be filmed for some kind of promotional video right after that, so we were done quite early today.
I'll post some comments from Rodney Wallace later today, once I get a chance to transcribe them.
Update: Rodney Wallace quotes
Apparently a hallway where people are constantly opening and slamming doors isn't the best place to conduct an interview. Sad. But here's what I could make out from our conversation.
On defense versus midfield:
You have to be ready, you have to go into it 100%, so the mentality doesn't change, but maybe your tactics change, so when you're attacking your creating chances and be more of a presence in front of the goal or regardless if your crossing or connecting passes and such, but you have to come in with the same attitude.
On leadership and helping out the younger players
I feel like, it's my fourth year in the league, and each year you learn a little more, and as every year goes younger guys come in. And having gained knowledge you obviously want to pass that along to your teammates, because the overall goal is to make everybody better. Whatever you can do to help a teammate be successful on the field, you have to do it. So it's all about staying together and making sure everybody's on the same page.
On playing for both Costa Rica and the Timbers
Obviously to make the playoffs, we want to do that as a team. For Costa Rica it's a big year for us -- a qualifying year -- so I just want to be a part of those matches and contribute as much as possible, and come back here and do my job with the Timbers. But at this point, my mind is on Monday night.
By the way, the upcoming 2014 World Cup qualifier for Costa Rica will take place August 6 against none other than El Salvador.