By FRANCO PANIZO
The New York Red Bulls might not be at full strength when they host the Philadelphia Union this weekend, but they will be pretty close to it.
Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke said Tuesday that Designated Players Thierry Henry and Tim Cahill have recovered from their respective knocks and should be available for Saturday’s Eastern Conference showdown at Red Bull Arena. Petke indicated that Henry would return to the starting lineup after missing this past weekend’s 2-0 loss to the Columbus Crew due to Achilles inflammation while adding that it was probable that Cahill, who suffered a torn PCL in July 27’s 4-3 win over Real Salt Lake, would at least see some minutes vs. the Union.
“I full expect Thierry to be available this weekend, 100 percent,” said Petke. “It was something that I was aware about all [last] week. I didn’t know exactly what was going to happen and then on Thursday, we made a precautionary decision. It was acting up and we went with it.”
“Cahill practiced fully today, 100 percent, no limitations. That’s a phenomenal sign, obviously. Judging by today’s performance. I’d expect a very good possibility that he’ll be available but we still have three practice sessions to go.”
Petke also added that midfielder Lloyd Sam could be healthy enough to dress for Saturday’s clash against Philadelphia. Sam, who suffered a left quadriceps injury in a 3-2 win vs. Sporting Kansas City on Aug. 3, took part in partial training on Tuesday and a decision will likely be made on his availability on Thursday.
What do you think of Cahill and Henry returning to play the Union? How big will their returns be? Do you see Sam being healthy enough to to play on Saturday?
Share your thoughts below.