TUKWILA, Wash. — Fredy Montero is going to Disneyland.
Starting Thursday, the Seattle Sounders will get a four-day break from official training, allowing the Colombian to visit one of his favorite spots. He’ll be joined by teammates Álvaro Fernández and Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, and that sits just fine with head coach Sigi Schmid.
“Everyone gets in a little bit of rest physically, but also mentally,” Schmid said following Wednesday’s training session. “Just to get away for awhile. Sort of like when you see your kids everyday, you don’t mind getting a break, not seeing them for a day or two. I’m sure everyone feels the same way. It’s just a chance to get away and recharge the batteries a little bit.”
Schmid said he felt it was important to reward his players with some time off following the recently finished stretch of games and get them recharged for another heavy stretch that awaits them after this break.
Tuesday’s 5-0 win over Cal FC in the fourth Round of the US Open Cup marked the 10th match the Sounders have played since April 28. They’ll go 11 days between games, and after that they’ll start another stretch that will see them play seven games in 22 days and, potentially, nine games in 30 days.
“I think it’s important more than anything for guys to step away,” Sounders midfielder Brad Evans said. “Guys have to treat their bodies differently. For me, I have to be in here three out of the four days, to keep the body going. For other guys, they can take four days off and just get back into it on Monday no problem.”
Evans added that he’ll be using the time off from training to keep himself match fit with gym work, as he sat out both of the Sounders’ Open Cup games and has missed three of the last six MLS contests. Other starters who are expected to be working back to match fitness are Mauro Rosales, Patrick Ianni, Adam Johansson, Leo González, Eddie Johnson and Michael Gspurning.
Schmid indicated that as many as three of those players could be ready in time for the June 16 game against the Montreal Impact.
“We think maybe Ianni could be back,” Schmid said. “With him, it’s more a question of fitness because he loses fitness quickly and takes a long time to gain it. So we have to work with him. Leo is somebody that could be back into the mix as well. Certainly Rosales is someone that will be back because we held him out of the two Open Cup games.”
The prognosis on Gspurning was less clear. The goalkeeper has not played since coming out at halftime on May 2 with a hip injury. He recently sought a second opinion, which revealed no serious damage.
“It might still take a little bit of time, but we know if we can be patient then the long-term benefit of it is it should be behind him and we can move forward,” Schmid said.
Jeremiah Oshan covers the Seattle Sounders for MLSsoccer.com and SB Nation.