TUKWILA, Wash. — It’s starting to look like every piece of good injury news out of Seattle Sounders camp must be immediately followed by bad news.
To that end, Eddie Johnson was able to participate in most of training on Friday for the first time since last weekend. Brad Evans, meanwhile, was held out while he deals with a calf injury that he re-aggravated on Tuesday.
Johnson, at least, sounded optimistic about playing against Santos Laguna next Tuesday in the second leg of the CONCACAF Champions League semifinals.
“I feel good,” said Johnson, who sat out the first leg. “Another day to get better. I did a lot of running around today. Did some work yesterday. Each day I’m getting better.”
Sounders head coach Sigi Schmid was a little more cautious in his assessment.
“He was able to do more today,” Schmid told reporters on Friday. “We wanted to see that he was able to be in the full warm-up and we got him to do some of the offense against defense drills. Tomorrow is an easier day and we’ll see where he is Sunday then make a determination if he’s a guy who can start or play off the bench for us. We’ll have to make that determination then.”
Schmid said a similar assessment will be done on Evans before the team leaves for Torreón after Sunday’s training.
Without Johnson in the lineup, the Sounders struggled to create much danger against Santos Laguna. Having him back in the lineup is made doubly important because the team has already said Obafemi Martins won’t be eligible for that game.
“It’s a good test to see where we are,” Johnson said about going to Santos Laguna. “Last year when we went down there, it was a disaster [a 6-1 loss]. We’re in a good position. We’re all looking forward to the game.”