The Sounders' week-long break ended at 2:30 this afternoon as they returned to the training pitch at Starfire, turning their attention from the World Cup to their return to MLS play one week from today in Philadelphia.
But while the players are back at work, general manager Adrian Hanauer remains in South Africa, where he will watch Blaise Nkufo and Switzerland tomorrow (our 7 a.m. game, vs. Chile). Then he'll remain for the final USA group game Wednesday (also our 7 a.m. game, vs. Algeria), and then he'll return to the States meeting the Sounders in Philly.
Before leaving, Hanauer said he will be mixing business with pleasure, visiting a game reserve, for example, while also keeping an eye on a player or two who might wind up in rave green before the summer is out.
"We’re looking, and we certainly have our sights on players," he said. "But how the process either is or isn’t successful, I can’t say how that might fall out. … The window opens for us July 15, so obviously if we bring in a foreign player we’re doing a lot of the legwork now. But an announcement – I wouldn’t expect an announcement in the short term. It would be more choreographed to the end of the World Cup perhaps, that time period."
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I'll file another update this afternoon after training, including some of their World Cup reaction along with health updates on Nate Jaqua and Osvaldo Alonso, etc.