Photo by Andrew Katsampes/ISIphotos.com
The Danny Califf situation continues to raise a few eyebrows in Philadelphia.
After the Philadelphia Union captain was an unused substitute in last week's home opener against the Colorado Rapids, he and manager Peter Nowak had differing stories on why the veteran centerback did not play. Nowak claimed that Califf was dealing with the aftereffects of offseason meniscus surgery and was not fit to play. Califf, meanwhile appeared to be miffed at the notion that he had a knee injury in his post-loss comments.
Nowak addressed the issue in a conference call this week, saying that fences had been mended, but now comes word that Califf will not travel with the club to Chicago for this weekend's meeting with the Fire. Instead, he will focus on regaining fitness and returning to action in next week's home game against Sebastien Le Toux and the Vancouver Whitecaps.
After being on the other side of the fence, Califf seems to be on board with Nowak's comments now, telling the club's official website that, "We're just going on the trajectory that we want to get (me) fit and strong. So we're taking the week leading up (to the game against Vancouver) and this weekend heading into next week to try and achieve that. Overall just getting fitter and stronger (is the goal)."
With Califf not available and Sheanon Williams on U.S. U-23 duty, the Union are perilously thin in the back. Chris Albright may be called on again to fill in for Williams at right back, but he picked up a groin strain last weekend. Rookie Raymon Gaddis is another option at right back. As for Califf's replacement, with no true centerback backup on the roster, central midfielder Gabriel Gomez should wind up dropping to the back line.
The Union will also be thinner in the midfield, with Freddy Adu and Amobi Okugo with Williams on U-23 duty.
Do you believe everything that's on the surface with the Califf situation, or do you think there's more to the story? Do you think the Union can get out of Chicago with points without Califf, Williams, Adu and Okugo?
Share your thoughts below.