Califf to miss Chicago trip, targeting return vs. Vancouver

Defender working towards full fitness after offseason knee surgery

Danny Califf vs. Orlando

Photo Credit: 
Donald Montague

CHESTER, Pa. – Union captain Danny Califf will not travel to Chicago for Saturday's road match against the Fire (8:30 p.m. ET, The Comcast Network).

The central defender will continue to work towards full fitness after undergoing offseason knee surgery, targeting next Saturday's home match against the Vancouver Whitecaps for a return to action.

After starting Philadelphia's season opener in Portland on March 12, Califf sat out the club's home opener against the Colorado Rapids on March 18.

"We're just going on the trajectory that we want to get (me) fit and strong," Califf told philadelphiaunion.com after Friday's training session at PPL Park. "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)."

Manager Peter Nowak echoed Califf's sentiments in his weekly press conference on Wednesday.

“I think we’ll find a good formula to assess the whole thing with our trainers, with our strength and conditioning coach, and we’ll try to prepare Danny for another 32 weeks,” Nowak said. “I think right now he understands the whole concept of that and it shouldn’t be a problem going forward.”

The Union will also be without starting right back Sheanon Williams, who is with the U-23 U.S. National Team for Olympic Qualifying. Veteran defender Chris Albright replaced Califf in the starting lineup against Colorado.