The team split into two groups after a short session on the field. Some players remained to do field work while others went inside for weight training. That wraps up the time at Starfire for likely the rest of the month.
It’s off to Arizona bright and early tomorrow morning and a practice at 4 p.m. at the facility in Casa Grande. Couple of things I learned – Midfielder Brad Evans, a Phoenix area native, and his family are hosting a team meal. And the Sounders will go to a Suns basketball game in Phoenix, against the Portland Trailblazers, early next week.
Coach Sigi Schmid said the team hopes to make the complex of fields in Casa Grande a permanent offseason training ground. The grass on the fields still needs more time to strengthen its roots, but with more teams coming in to use the facility in the future, it could be a place were Sounders FC practices and then stays longer for training games against other teams.
Schmid on Steve Zakuani: “We expect him to make better decisions. He had a number of situations last year where he got in, he got either behind the defense or he got good looks on goal and we didn’t always come out with the best results. So if we can get him to up that ratio to 25 percent or 30 or 35 percent, where we get something out of it…then that’s going to help us at the end of the day with our goal production.”
Schmid on Freddie Ljungberg today: “He’s competitive. He was a little upset with us at the end of the second game [scrimmage] because he thought we had changed the rules in the middle of the game. Which we didn’t….He’s been good.”