It wasn’t a game that counted in the standings, but the Sounders intra-squad scrimmage over the weekend did count as another step toward returning to game fitness.
Friday’s 11-v-11 game featured all available first team players — decked out in full kits — at Starfire for an intense 60-minute session that provided the team with another data point on the road to Orlando.
The scoreline (a 3-0 victory by the Rave Green) of course wasn’t particularly important, but according to coach Brian Schmetzer, it was more important that there was a competitive atmosphere as the team gets ready to depart for Orlando in just over a week’s time.
“A warm day out...is preparing us for Orlando,” Schmetzer said. “There was a little bit of talking back and forth amongst the group; it made it a little more competitive.”
The scrimmage marked the unofficial return of Will Bruin to the team, as the forward has been out since last summer recovering from an ACL injury. Bruin was very effective for the Rave Green side, scoring a goal and winning praise from Schmetzer after the game.
“Will Bruin had an excellent game today. Excellent, outstanding,” Schmetzer said. “Good to have him fully back.”
The other two goals game from Miguel Ibarra and newest homegrown signing Ethan Dobbelaere, making a mark just days after signing with first team. Having been off from any real training for three months, there was still rust and fatigue that the team will have to shake off.
“You feel that it’s been awhile since you’ve been doing this,” said midfielder Gustav Svensson. “Training [fitness] is one thing, game is another. It’s difficult to train your game fitness. You have to play games against other opponents in real matches to get that last couple of percentage in you.
“We’re trying to get there and we have couple more weeks until Orlando starts. We’re not really there yet physically.”
- Though there was some reporting that the schedule would be released last week, there has been no word from MLS about it since commissioner Don Garber held a press conference on June 10, two weeks ago. The tournament is set to kick off on July 8, two weeks from now.
- There is increasing concern about the spike in Covid-19 cases in Florida, but as of yet the league has not commented on whether they are considering postponing or cancelling the tournament, or what the threshold would be for such an action.
- Related to the spike in positive Covid-19 cases, The Athletic is reporting that MLS will not require teams to disclose players who test positive for the virus.