Sean McAuley addresses the press after practice. - William Conwell
The Timbers held practice at Jeld-Wen Field today after fighting to a high scoring 3-3 draw against the San Jose Earthquakes last night to kick off the Portland Preseason Tournament.
At today's practice the team was split into two groups with the starters from yesterday's match undergoing a regen session while the rest of the team continued preparing for the Timbers' Wednesday match up against FC Dallas. The first team ran some warm up exercises under the watchful eye of fitness coach John Cone before heading inside to continue their session. Meanwhile, the Timbers reserves played several games of keep away before switching over to a short fielded scrimmage in teams of eight.
Trialists and Guest Players
The Timbers continued with the same group of trialists in camp from last week with Calum Angus, Andre Clennon, Michael Nanchoff, Chris Hegngi, and David Meves all continuing to practice with the team.
Angus and Clennon are free agents, while the Timbers control the rights to Nanchoff, Hegngi, and Meves.
Injuries and Absences
Two Timbers picked up new injuries yesterday as Hanyer Mosquera and Milos Kocic both missed training today. Mosco suffered a strained hip flexor in the first half of last night's game against the San Jose Earthquakes, while Kocic tweaked his hamstring during the team's warm ups last night and was replaced in the line-up by Jake Gleeson.
Gleeson and Futty Danso both continued their returns today after missing time last week by taking in a whole training session.
David Horst, Jack Jewsbury, and Chris Taylor all remain out with long term injuries and did not practice today. Horst is the closest to making a return, according to Caleb Porter's comments last week, but the team is continuing to be careful with Horst as he recovers from a groin strain. Jewsbury will likely miss the remainder of the preseason with a strained hamstring. Chris Taylor was spotted doing some jogging around the pitch today, but he is still a ways away from taking part in practice after going down with a knee sprain in Arizona.
Brent Richards also made a brief appearance at practice today, walking around the pitch with a slight limp. Richards, along with Bright Dike, is expected to return from knee surgery about five months into the season.
- The reserves' short field game at practice today was an intense one, featuring high pressure and little room for attacking play.
- One player who stood out with his ability to play a creative pass was Michael Nanchoff, who threaded the needle several times, but his pass was either slightly off or the ensuing chance was saved.
- Calum Angus looked dependable playing in the center of the defense. He is not the biggest central defender, but he seemed to be in the right place at the right time with regularity and blocked more shots than either keeper.
- After practice wrapped up, Sean McAuley stayed on the pitch with several of the Timbers youngsters to work with them in a small group on their runs forward and wall passes. In the group who stayed out on the pitch were Steven Evans, Mobi Fehr, Jose Adolfo Valencia, and Sebastian Rincon.