Every player on the Battery roster except Quinton Griffith, who was dealing with a toothache, participated in at least part of Wednesday’s training session.
That included striker Omar Salgado, who joined the team for finishing drills and stayed after practice with three other teammates for extra work. Salgado has been out of the lineup since spraining a toe on his right foot against Richmond on March 29 and will not play this Friday against the New York Red Bulls Reserves. The 20-year-old has been pushing hard to get back on the field, but the Battery — in conjunction with officials from the Vancouver Whitecaps — have been cautious in his monitoring his progress.
Salgado ran and moved easily, but initially seemed to be striking the ball cautiously in drills. His power and accuracy appeared to improve with repetition.
Word out of the team today is that Salgado could be in line for a call-up to a U.S. National youth team camp next week if he’s healthy. If the calls comes, Salgado will likely miss the Battery’s match at Pittsburgh a week from Saturday, but could fly in and join the team for its match at Rochester the following night.
Wednesday’s practice was a high-tempo affair, with several players — including forward Adam Mena and midfielder Zach Prince — looking particularly sharp with their finishing.
Mena sat out Saturday’s 0-1 loss at Orlando after suffering back spasms earlier last week. On Wednesday he looked fluid, smooth and confident.
Defensive midfielder Michael Kafari practiced full out and showed no lingering effects from the aggravated knee problem that has kept him out of every match since his first preseason appearance.
Also looking healthy was forward Dane Kelly, who started at Orlando for his first game action since pulling his hamstring during the Carolina Challenge Cup.
It’s a short week with the Battery playing Friday night against the New York Red Bulls Reserves, so the team will do it’s usual Old-v-Young scrimmage tomorrow.
Check back on Thursday for a Red Bulls game preview.
TOP PHOTO: Defensive midfielder Amadou Sanyang heads upfield in during a controlled scrimmage under the direction of assistant coach Troy Lesesne. The rules allowed the staff to focus players’ attention on particular types of movement and passing. Dan Conover photos.