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Red Bulls winger Sam set to return against Sporting KC

New York's Lloyd Sam

Photo Credit: 
Courtesy of New York Red Bulls

UPPER MONTCLAIR, N.J. – The New York Red Bulls will be fighting to secure their spot in the postseason on Saturday when they take on Sporting Kansas City, and it appears Lloyd Sam will play a role in trying to help make that happen.

Sidelined for the Red Bulls’ last game prior to the international break because of a hamstring injury, Sam continued his road to recovery by doing a full session with the team on Tuesday morning. Head coach Hans Backe said Sam should be good to go vs. Sporting and the 28-year-old midfielder agreed, saying he felt good and that there are no lingering pains or problems.

“I’ve had three days training now so I feel basically back to how I was,” Sam told reporters on Tuesday. “We’ve done a lot of work and I’ve got another four days training before the game, so no complaints.”

Sam admitted difficulty in having to observe from the sidelines as his teammates struggled in a 2-0 home loss to the Chicago Fire on Oct. 6, which left them in fourth place in the Eastern Conference heading into the international break.

“It was a bad game to watch,” he said. “I felt like I’ve let down the team a little bit because it looked like we needed someone to carry the ball, and that’s what I do. That’s exactly how I felt because the game before that we won 4-1 and played well and the balance of the team was right.

“I’m not saying the balance wasn’t right without me,” he said, “but watching it and seeing us, I wanted to just be on the pitch.” 

Franco Panizo covers the New York Red Bulls for MLSsoccer.com. He can be reached at Franco8813@gmail.com.