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February 12, 2012 at 11:59 PM

Sounders arrive in Florida

florida sunday.jpgPhoto credit: Seattle Sounders FC

The Sounders were met by 40-degree temperatures and strong winds upon arrival in Florida this weekend (note the long sleeves and coats). Here are some highlights from the team report of Sunday’s practices:

— Of the 35-man camp roster, two didn’t make the trip. Forward O’Brian White (blood clots) and goalkeeper Josh Ford (knee) stayed in Seattle to deal with injury issues.

— Four players did fitness work during the afternoon session: Alex Caskey, Leo Gonzalez, Michael Tetteh, Steve Zakuani. We know three of them have been dealing with physical issues (Caskey, concussion; Tetteh, hamstring; Zakuani, leg).

— Forward Mike Fucito (illness) and midfielder Christian Sivebaek (knee) trained in full after being limited recently.

— From the team: “Sounders FC players are wearing a new GPS-based tracking system during training sessions that monitors players’ physical load. The Catapult Sports tracking system allows coaches and trainers to maximize player performance by keeping players fresh. Sunday was one of the first days that players wore the GPS system.”

— There will be a morning session tomorrow before a 1 p.m. PT training game against USL Pro team Orlando City SC. I’m pretty sure the game is open to the public at the IMG Academy in Bradenton.

— Team-provided quotes from coach Sigi Schmid after the jump…

* * *

(On returning to Florida for preseason training…) “It’s good. It doesn’t take two, three days to get used to it. It takes you about a day so they know the field again, some of the guys it’s new for them. But for a lot of the other guys they know the fields and they have been here before and so it’s just good to get going again.”

(On the weather…) “That arctic low that followed us down here we’re not happy about that. Obviously the fields are good. It’s a good training environment and the sun’s coming out so it’s going to warm up.”

(On the scheduled training games…) “You always look forward to games when you are playing against somebody else and you’re not playing against each other. Our emphasis now is on the games and getting a lot of fitness out of the games but also to work a lot on the tactical side of the game. That’s what we worked on today, just bringing guys into the final third of the field, working on our finishing, starting to work on those aspects of our game.”

(On goals for Florida camp…) “Just that the guys get a better understanding of each other, understand how they play, where they want the ball and so forth. It’s good to see a guy like [Christian] Sivebaek in for the full training so guys can start to read him, he gets himself more integrated into the team. Just their understanding with each other and getting more and more confident and getting sharper and sharper in terms of their decision making.”

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