Brian McBride and San Jose's Ike Opara clash for a 50-50 ball

Fire head to San Jose


Headed to San Jose with not much more than pride on the line, the Fire are saddled with another batch of possible injury issues.  Freddie Ljungberg, Bratislav Ristic, and Gonzalo Segares were all held out of a short training session this morning before boarding a plane for California (read Sam Stejskal's wrap up here).  Nery Castillo will miss his second consecutive match with what has been identified as a quad injury and did not travel with the team while Mike Banner also was left home with an achilles issue. 

From the sound of things it appears that the Fire are coming to grips with the reality of missing the playoffs and are looking to find time for younger players against San Jose and possibly FC Dallas on Saturday.  Carlos De Los Cobos implied that Dasan Robinson and Kwame Watson-Siriboe will be the pairing in the middle and Steven Kinney will return at right back.  Corben Bone may even get an extended run.  What would a line up infused with youngsters look like?

Defensively, the Fire need to find out what they have in Watson-Siriboe given that CJ Brown may retire and Wilman Conde's status for next season is up in the air.  Regardless of what Watson-Siriboe shows in the remaining six matches, center back is a position that needs to be addressed at some point in the off-season with a reliable addition.  Right back is also another area of concern.  Steven Kinney has shown well at times but he lacks the pace to be a top caliber right back.  Both Kinney and Robinson are serviceable at right back but an upgrade here could be considered as a secondary need. 

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