BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. – Fire midfielder John Thorrington revealed was forced out at halftime of Wednesday’s scoreless draw against Toronto FC due to leg cramps related to the left quad injury that kept him sidelined from March until Aug. 28.
“My muscle was basically just cramping up and I couldn’t go, so I took myself off,” Thorrington told MLSsoccer.com after the match. “I was tight in a couple areas before the game.
"I felt like I could hold my own in the first half, but I knew that there was a risk of making myself a whole lot worse if I went back out in the second.”
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Thorrington, who was replaced in the match by Wilman Conde, declined to specify exactly what part of his leg was bothering him. The fiery midfielder, who went the full 90 in his season debut at Seattle on Aug. 28 and on Saturday against LA, did say that he hopes his injury is merely a byproduct of the Fire’s quick turnaround.
“It’s just a muscle issue that hopefully is nothing like a strain or anything,” he said. “I’m hoping it’s just my body getting used to playing again.
"I felt good in both [the Seattle and L.A.] games, I just think afterwards is when tightness and things set in. With this quick turnaround, I think this game came a bit too soon for my body.”
Thorrington said he isn’t sure how the injury will affect his availability for the Fire’s match in Philadelphia on Saturday.
“We’ll have to see,” he said. “It’s just going to depend on how it recovers. ... I’ve been getting therapy around the clock to do everything we can to get it right. Obviously everybody knows my frustration with missing games this year so I certainly don’t want to miss anymore.”
Fire head coach Carlos de los Cobos, meanwhile, explained the reasoning behind his benching of Conde for the start of Wednesday night’s game.
“Wilman didn’t start because he didn’t have the level that he had in the past,” de los Cobos said through a translator. “He’s a great player, but he’s just been losing his level and we’re just hoping for him to get it back.”
Conde was replaced in the starting lineup by Dasan Robinson – who had a solid performance – before he came in for Thorrington.
Sam Stejskal covers the Chicago Fire for MLSsoccer.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @samstejskal.