Union midfielder Marco Fabián was named Tuesday night to Mexico’s 29-player training camp roster for the coming Concacaf Gold Cup. But that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s going to show up there - at least not right away.
The Mexican federation’s announcement was oddly worded. The training camp will start Sunday, but players in the midst of their club seasons are being allowed to report on dates of their choosing. Mexico coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino will cut the list of 29 players to the Gold Cup squad of 23 during the first week of June. El Tri will play friendlies June 5 against Venezuela in Atlanta and June 9 against Ecuador in Arlington, Texas.
Union manager Jim Curtin said during a Wednesday press conference that Fabián’s departure date hasn’t been set.
“We’re in constant contact with the Mexican federation,” he said. “Nothing has been finalized in terms of his leaving. ... We’ll have constant dialogue over the next few days with them, and make the decision when the time is called upon.”
The Union have home games on May 18 (Seattle), 25 (Portland) and 29 (Colorado), visit Minnesota United on June 2, and host the New York Red Bulls on June 8. Then they won’t play again until June 26, as MLS takes a break during the Gold Cup group stage.
Fabián hasn’t played for Mexico since a friendly at Argentina last November. He wasn’t around to give his side of the story Wednesday, because he didn’t practice as a precautionary measure after feeling further pain in his previously sprained ankle.
“He trained yesterday with the group as a neutral in an exercise where we wanted him to be constantly moving, to get on the ball and have a lot of change of direction. ... It didn’t respond well to that,” Curtin said. “I thought it would have had some more time to heal with a couple days off that we gave the guys — that they earned — and then got through about three quarters of the session yesterday, and I could tell he was laboring. It’s just not 100 percent.”
There was better news elsewhere on the field, starting with goalkeeper Andre Blake’s return to full training after missing the last 4 1/2 games with a strained adductor muscle.
“He looked great today, really good with his feet, showed comfort kicking balls,” Curtin said. “We’re optimistic that he could return against Seattle.”
Word got out Wednesday morning that the Union have just about wrapped up extending Jamiro Monteiro’s loan for the rest of the season. Sporting director Ernst Tanner told the Philly Soccer Page that the trades of David Accam and Derrick Jones cleared enough cap space to do the deal, and its impending completion is “not a big secret.”