Timbers near end of Week Two
TODAY AT TRAINING:Week 2 of the Portland Timbers preseason training camp is nearing completion. This week, head coach Gavin Wilkinson has continued to focus on player fitness but has also incorporated more drills that include touches on the ball and off-ball movement on the pitch.
NEW FACES: Participating in training drills for the first time today was midfielder Luke Kreamalmeyer, last season’s leading scorer. Kreamalmeyer joined camp on Wednesday but spent a majority of the week developing his fitness. The Timbers now have all 17 signed players in camp. Goalkeeper Bayard Elfvin arrived last Tuesday.
IN HIS OWN WORDS: Elfvin on camp this week. “Training this week has been good. It’s been a good transition week for me coming from the indoor game. Now I’m working on expanding my range on the field of play.
“I feel good so far. Coming straight from the indoor season, I feel pretty fit. The biggest adjustment is just getting used to playing outdoor again.
“I’m excited to play for Gavin (Wilkinson). He’s brought in guys who are willing to do what it takes to get results. We all have a lot of respect for him, and I’m happy to finally be here.”
ON THE AGENDA: The Timbers played the first of two scrimmages this week last Wednesday. Wilkinson’s squad, composed of signed players and trialists, played the University of Portland. The Timber’s next test is this weekend.
ABOUT THE MANAGER: The upcoming season marks Wilkinson’s first as a head coach, but he has been a member of the Timbers organization since it joined United Soccer Leagues in 2001. The former defender is among the Timbers franchise leaders in both games and minutes played, currently ranked third with 124 games and 10,181 minutes in a Timbers kit. Last season, Wilkinson served as a player / assistant coach under Chris Agnello. Prior to joining the Timbers, Wilkinson played professionally overseas in Ireland, Portugal, Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong. The New Zealand native was appointed head coach and general manager on September 26, 2006.