Sounders FC was back on the practice field Friday following Wednesday’s CONCACAF Champions League victory, and there were a few newsworthy notes to pass along.
The team announced that two players, midfielders Mauro Rosales and Alvaro Fernandez, received their green cards, granting them permanent resident status. Now you may be asking yourself, why does it matter if Sounders player have their green card? Glad you asked. Major League Soccer teams are allowed to have eight international players on their roster (though teams can trade international slots, so that’s not a firm number). Now that Fernandez, who is from Uruguay and, and Rosales, who is from Argentina, have their green cards, they don’t count towards those international spots. This is common practice for MLS teams—veterans such as Fredy Montero, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Osvaldo Alonso and Leo Gonzalez have already their green cards—and Seattle now is well below the limit for international players with 6: Adam Johansson, Christian Sivebaek, Amadou Sanyang, Cordell Cato, Michael Gspurning and Michael Tettah.
The other piece of news from today’s practice was that defender Adam Duran, the team’s first-round pick this year, was on crutches having recently had arthroscopic surgery on right knee to repair a medial meniscus tear. Sounders FC coach Sigi Schmid said Duran will likely be out four to six weeks.
Seattle travels next week to Mexico for the second leg of its quarterfinal series with Santos Laguna, and we could see one lineup change from the team Schmid fielded this week. Forward Eddie Johnson, who came on as a late-game substitution, is making good progress from the hamstring injury that has limited his training, and could join the starting lineup, though Schmid wouldn’t say whether Johnson will start or if he will stick with David Estrada.