Training Day

Head Coach Jesse Marsch said, despite some bumps and bruises and a compressed preseason, “almost the full complement of guys” will be ready for the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals on Wednesday.

Damien Perrinelle, who arrived in camp for the second preseason stint in Arizona, Mike Grella, who had a knee scope in early February, and Alex Muyl, who took a hard challenge in a preseason game, will all be ready to play when the Vancouver Whitecaps come to town.

“With Alex, it was just trying to manage his facial fractures,” Marsch said. “We expect him to be fit and ready to go for Wednesday.”

Muyl participated in training on Saturday wearing a facial mask to help protect the fractures in his face suffered in a preseason collision against New England.

Marsch said that the tight group of players he’s coached over his first two seasons should help them prepare for this huge game so early in the year.

“We’ve had a great group for the two years that I’ve been here. I’m in a very lucky position to coach these guys. It’s an honor and a privilege. I think all those things mean something when big games come around,” Marsch said. 

“I want us to take all our different experiences in the past – and it is a different team, there are some big pieces that are different, but a lot of the core leaders are still here and I think they’ll be able to help everyone understand how to approach this game.”

Despite the quicker-than-normal preseason schedule, Marsch expects his team to come out competing.

“Even though we’re not at our top fitness or our top sharpness right now, we’ll be really excited for the challenge,” he said