Loons’ injury situation worsens going into Saturday’s home opener

Minnesota United’s injury situation has gotten worse going into the home opener against Columbus Crew at Allianz Field on Saturday.

Robin Lod, who scored the first goal in the 2-1 season-opening win at Austin FC last Saturday, took a kick to the calf in that game and was limited to riding a stationary bike during the open training session in St. Paul on Tuesday.

“We are just managing him a little bit,” interim head coach Cameron Knowles said post-practice.

Franco Fragapane developed a “slight calf strain that might keep him out for this weekend,” Knowles said.

The Loons (1-0-0) were without Emanuel Reynoso (knee) and Bongi Hlongwane (U.S. green card) in Texas, and both players appear doubtful to play against the MLS Cup champions this weekend.

Reynoso and Hlongwane participated in parts of Tuesday’s training session, but were also on the side for stretches.

“(Reynoso) continues to build his fitness — (he is) unlikely probably for the weekend,” Knowles said. “We’ll see day to day. But we need to continue to integrate him and build his fitness through training.

“We need to build (Hlongwane’s) fitness. He won’t be available this weekend,” Knowles said. “… Difficult situation he was in (in South Africa). He wasn’t able to train with a team and only on his own, so we need to work and build him up.”

Kervin Arriaga (knee) and Lod appears to be the players closest to coming off the injured list for Saturday’s match.

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