The Sounders get a rare week without anything but their Saturday game at Chivas USA to occupy them. And with no midweek league/Open Cup/Champions League games to worry about, coach Sigi Schmid started juggling his training schedule this morning at Starfire.
“Today we were able to play a little bit of 11 v 11 with the other guys, trying to maintain their fitness, as well," he said. "Tomorrow it allows us to do a little bit of group work, which we really haven’t done in a while. It allows us to get into the weights, which is important as well to maintain ourselves. So those are all things that it allows us to do and just to get into a little bit of a rhythm. But again, like I said, guys don’t mind playing games and we start another rhythm of games after this. So it will be good.”
CONCACAF group play will return mid-week games over the next two weeks, and the Open Cup semi looms the week after that.
However, Schmid said that's the way they want it.
“I like games," he said. "Players like games. You would rather play games than train, I’ve said that before. We are a club that wants to reach the highest level possible. We are a club that likes and appreciates challenges and myself as a coach, that’s what I like as well. Right now we are still on the dance floor in three different songs and we want to continue to go.”
Then they had better pull out their dancing shoes, because, according to a Sounders news release:
While the next 10 days are relatively calm, soon the Sounders FC will be swirling in activity. By qualifying for the Champions League group stage, Seattle will now play at least 17 times before the MLS regular season ends in late October. Playoffs, a friendly and a berth in the Open Cup final could potentially push that total to 23 matches between now and November 21, the date of MLS Cup 2010. Sounders FC played a total of 40 competitive and friendly matches in 2009. It is guaranteed to play a minimum of 44 this season.