This morning's closed practice session was shot and to the point as the Portland Timbers prepare to take on the Chicago Fire tomorrow. Starting the day off with their usual day-before meeting, the Timbers hit the pitch late for their usual warm up routine, running through some agility drills before the press were removed from the day's training.
After practice was over Michael Harrington talked to the press about playing with an interchanging group of attacking players in front of him.
I kind of like it at times. It's nice to get a feel for different guys and change things up on opposing defenders. It can be difficult for them. One minute it is Nagbe, then it is Gaston, and when they are not quite sure what a certain guy brings I think it can be an advantage.
According to Harrington, he has not faced an attack that is quite as free flowing as the Timbers' is going forward.
Here and there you will have guys change sides, but the guys that we have been playing [in the attack], they can play in the middle, the left, the right, they can all interchange.
With a group that tends to tuck inside ahead of him, Harrington's responcibilities both on offense and defense are increased, but that is just the way he likes it.
I like getting forward, so it opens up a little bit more space for me to get into some more dangerous areas, crossing areas. I like that challenge to overlap and cover a little bit more ground and get more involved in the attack.
Injuries and Absences
Pa Modou Kah was again on the sidelines of practice today, working with a trainer alongside Kalif Alhassan, Steven Evans, and Rodney Wallace. After missing the first practice of the week, Kah has spent the last three days on the sidelines. Although Caleb Porter has declined to speculate on whether Kah will be available for tomorrow's match it looks very unlikely that he will play.