Last Wednesday, we got an important note on Marvell Wynne's health -- he is still match fit for full 90 minute games. That was the good news. The bad news was that he was hardly Marvell Wynne during a lot of that match. Certainly, he was defending better than your Palgutas and your Marshalls had been defending in the weeks after his injury, but his trademark speed just wasn't there.
One of the biggest keys to Saturday's match against the Portland Timbers will be Marvell's technical abilities being back on par after a week and a half of rest from his 90 minute appearance against San Jose.
We certainly saw some good stuff out of Marvell, and San Jose being a somewhat slow operating team helped out, but there were some... glitches. Alan Gordon's race through the defense at the end of the game that ended up in the penalty kick came at the expense of Wynne, and he scarcely was able to pass the center line of the field. In fact, that game probably would have been worse had the Earthquakes taken advantage of the situation more often -- Marvell wasn't tested very often, having the fewest 'events' recorded on OPTA's chalkboard of any defender.
If a week of rest gets him back to 100% or at least close, we'll have a much easier time of things against a tough offense from Portland. And if he's not back to full health by then? Well, at least he's still better than Palguta.