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Portland Timbers Training Quotes and Notes: Great Expectations

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William Conwell

The Portland Timbers trained this morning at the team's Beaverton practice facility, holding a closed session as they prepare for Saturday's match against the Vancouver Whitecaps.

As the press were allowed out onto the pitch, the Timbers had already wrapped up the bulk of their training session and were stretching on the pitch. Although some headed indoors immediately, a number stayed on the pitch taking shots on goal.

Jorge Villafana and Maximiliano Urruti took a particularly interesting approach to shooting, trying to bank balls off the fence behind the pitch and into a pair of miniature goals that were faced away from the field. Shoot from distance, both came tantalizingly close, but neither was able to get the ball into the goal.

Will Johnson, not surprisingly, was one of the last players still on the pitch, practicing shooting and taking free kicks until the majority of the team had headed indoors.

Also still out on the pitch while Johnson was shooting on goal was Jack Jewsbury, stretching with Danny O'Rourke and Nat Borchers. Jewsbury, as he eventually headed indoors, took a moment to talk with the press about the Timbers' upcoming opponents.

"We went there a month ago now and played a really solid game," Jewsbury said about the Whitecaps. "Unfortunately, things didn't go our way and we came out of it on the wrong end of a result."

Coming home from Vancouver without any points, however, only seems to have reinforced Jewsbury's feeling about this game.

"We feel confidence in the way that we played against them and we are looking for a good response after a tough result in Seattle this past weekend. We are at home so we expect to get three points."

As far as what he is expecting from Vancouver on Saturday, Jewsbury is not expecting many changes from the league-leaders.

"Maybe they change it up a little bit, but I don't think that is the way that they've been playing," said Jewsbury. "From the outside looking in, they feel pretty comfortable sitting a bit deeper and, with the speed they have in their front four or five guys, they are looking to counter. And especially on the road a lot of teams come in here, sit back a bit, and look to do that."

Jewsbury continued his defensive appraisal of the Whitecaps, "We have got to be a bit careful making sure that we are not pushing too many numbers forward, because they are a very dangerous team on the counter."

Injuries and Absences

Rodney Wallace appeared to have trained with the rest of the team again today and was still on the pitch taking shots on goal for a period after finishing stretching.

Dairon Asprilla, who had surgery to repair his broken wrist on Monday, worked with trainers on the sidelines of today's practice. According to Caleb Porter yesterday, Asprilla should be available for Saturday's match.

Taylor Peay and Jake Gleeson were the only T2 loanees apparently on hand for today's training session. The remainder of the loanees, Nick Besler, Andrew Thoma, and Schillo Tshuma, were not spotted with the first team today.

Trialists and Guest Players

O'Rourke and regular fourth keeper Justin Luthy were the only T2 players on hand for today's first team training session.