Jefferson Savarino Not Expecting To Start Against Houston, Elated To Be Back In Utah
SALT LAKE CITY – Newly signed Designated Player Jefferson Savarino has arrived in Utah, passed his physical and medical tests, completed his first day of training, but admits that he will not be ready to play a full 90 minutes this weekend against Houston.
Savarino, 25, arrived in Utah yesterday after a long day of travel from Brazil. He last played a competitive match on April 23rd when he scored two goals for Atlético Mineiro and has since been training on his own. During his first day of training with his new club, Savarino was spotted training with injured forward Anderson Julio to the side. He was not involved with the main group.
“Obviously that is the coach’s decision,” Savarino said when asked if he would be available for selection this week. “Today they put me through a physical test. I felt really, really good with my last couple of games with Atlético [Mineiro]. Obviously, I do not think I am ready to play a full 90 (minutes) but it is up to the coach with how much I play and if I play.
Mastroeni Cautiously Optimistic
Real Salt Lake manager Pablo Mastroeni also shared his thoughts on the availability of Savarino ahead of this weekend’s home encounter with Houston-
“He [Savarino] has had a long day of travel yesterday, there is altitude here, he has not trained in three to four weeks with a team and so we are taking it day by day. He did some fitness work today to see where he is at from that perspective. He will join the team and we will see with every exercise that he partakes in how he feels afterward. Obviously, with our strength and conditioning, with our medical staff, and most importantly with Jefferson’s perspective as to where he is at we will make the best decision for him at the weekend.”
Savarino is clearly hoping to see minutes this weekend, however, as Mastroeni mentioned above, his availability will likely be determined based on his recovery and health throughout the remainder of the week.
Nonetheless, Savarino is incredibly excited to be back in Utah and to be playing for Real Salt Lake again.
“Real Salt Lake contacted me at the start of the year and really it was a tough decision, I say that sincerely. But I saw the unity in the team, I had conversations with the coach and Atlético Mineiro had different priorities so I decided to come back up here,” Savarino said when asked what the defining factor was in his decision to return.
Furthermore, Savarino also admitted that he has been paying close attention to Real Salt Lake while in Brazil. So much so that he has watched almost every game of Real Salt Lake’s since leaving the club in 2019.
Real Salt Lake will host Houston at Rio Tinto Stadium at 7:30 on Saturday, May 28.
The fixture will be available to stream for free via the KSL Sports and KSL 5 TV apps or on KSL Sports dot com.
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