After Monday's practice I asked Caleb Porter if he expected Rodney Wallace to be available for Wednesday's game against the LA Galaxy. This was his response:
Not if he is obviously with Costa Rica. Obviously. So if he is with Costa Rica then he is not available.
The Costa Rican national team host Panama in World Cup qualifying this evening at 7 p.m. in San Jose. Despite not yet featuring for Costa Rica, Wallace has been away on national team duty for the Timbers' last two games and certainly seems to be on the verge of missing his third.
There is a physical issue at play. Tonight's game is in San Jose, Costa Rica. Tomorrow's game is in Los Angeles, California. Between the two is most of Central America and a good chunk of North America too.
A quick peak at whatever booking agency suits your fancy will show that Wallace would need to endure about ten hours of travel time before arriving in LA if he were to play. Of course, this is doable, but how badly do the Timbers want Rodney back?
- With Wallace in the starting line-up the Timbers are 5-0-3.
- With Wallace coming in as a substitute the Timbers are 0-1-4.
- With Wallace out of the line-up the Timbers are 1-0-1.
So, do we really think that Rodney Wallace, two weeks removed from practicing with the team and 3,300 miles removed from LA will be able to effectively contribute, particularly when his substitute appearances have often marked a failure to take all three points? The odds of a player doing that amount of traveling after such a prolonged absence and stepping straight into a starting spot seem low, so it is hard to imagine Wallace arriving and taking his starting spot back immediately after stepping off the plane.
What do you think? Should the team try to bring Rodney Wallace back into the fold for tomorrow's game or should they bring him home for this Sunday's match against the Colorado Rapids?