The Sounders went through a light trianing session this morning at Starfire.
Afterward, coach Sigi Schmid updated some of the personnel issues with his team heading into the Champions League group stage finale tomorrow, the MLS regular-season finale Saturday and the playoffs beyond.
On Bryan Meredith being the reserve keeper last night:
“(Josh) Ford’s got a little bit of a knee issue. His knee had tightened up, so he wasn’t able to go. That’s why Meredith was the backup. … Ford’s better today, we just have to see how he is.”
On getting Mauro Rosales back from his knee injury: “It was tremendous. He’s an important player for our team in terms of what he contributes on and off the field. I’m sure he’s happier when he’s reconnecting and he’s playing again. He has that ability to either beat you off the dribble or keep the ball. Our wide players, sometimes they either beat you or lose the ball. Mauro’s that guy where basically 75 percent of the time he’s either going to beat you or keep the ball. It makes us a much more effective team and his crossing is just a notch above other people’s crossing.”
On Sammy Ochoa’s goal and increasing readiness:
“Obviously he did well with the goal that he scored. It was a good run. The timing of the run was good; the timing of the pass was excellent. Obviously he finished it well. He got for the one header, as well. He and Montero almost pulled off a combination right at the edge of the 18. That’s the reason we brought Sammy here. He’s getting fitter and he had an impact on the game last night. He helped change the game for us.”
Meanwhile, Rosales confirmed that it was good to get back and that he expects to be 90-minutes fit by the playoffs.
How’d last night go? “Four weeks is a very long time. I think it was a good game for us because we finished with a victory and we were waiting for that. It was a special game. Also for the fans, they made a huge atmosphere out there. It was perfect for everybody. They deserved the prize of three points and a win. Things were OK and I feel very good. I feel some pain, but I don’t know why. Maybe it was because I have to warm it up a little bit more. Coming off the bench is difficult to do, but it’s OK. It’s getting better. Every week I feel the difference in my knee and I hope Saturday I can play more minutes.”
If you get more time Saturday and things go well, do you expect to be 90 minutes fit for playoffs?) “Yeah. I’m trying to do that: play at Chivas for 90 minutes or almost 90 minutes. I’m just trying to see how the knee is feeling. It’s getting better and it’s going to be OK.”