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Portland Timbers Training Quotes and Notes: Filling the Gap

The Portland Timbers practiced this morning ahead of this weekend's match up against the San Jose Earthquakes.

William Conwell

The Timbers held a closed practice session today at their Beaverton training facility as they ramp up preparations to take on the San Jose Earthquakes on Sunday. The Timbers started things off with their usual warmup routine before closing practice to the press.

Looking forward to the weekend's game, Ryan Johnson expressed confidence in the team's attack.

I know that I can trust my teammates a little bit more when it comes to them being around me, them looking to play the ball at the right time, because it is all about timing with those things and the timing is on here. It's a good feeling because you know that when you do make that run most likely the ball is going to be there or they are going to try to get it there.

Johnson, who has scored three goals in five games this season, is looking to continue his goalscoring ways against San Jose. The Timbers will likely be without playmaker Diego Valeri, but Johnson believes that Darlington Nagbe and Kalif Alhassan can once again step up to fill the void, saying, "It is good to be surrounded by good players. It makes things easier for me."

Injuries and Absences

Several Timbers returned to training with the rest of the today after missing the start of the week.

Diego Valeri warmed up with the team today but looked to be working out separately as practice was closed. After practice Ryan Johnson told the press that the team would be holding Valeri out of Sunday's game as he finishes going through the league's concussion protocol.

Sal Zizzo, who has been out for the last month after undergoing surgery to repair the meniscus in his left knee, warmed up with the team as well. Like Valeri it looked like Zizzo would not be taking part in practice with the rest of the team after warm ups were completed.

Andrew Jean-Baptiste and Mikael Silvestre were back out practicing with the full team today after working out separately at the start of the week thanks to what Caleb Porter called "heavy legs".

David Horst, Bright Dike, and Brent Richards all continued to miss practice as they recover from their respective knee surgeries.

Trialists and Guest Players

David Meves continued his time as a guest player with the Timbers today.