Holden heads back to Bolton, still 6-8 weeks away from resuming training

Stuart Holden USMNT practice (ISI)


Stuart Holden has made his way back to Bolton Wanderers, but that does not mean that his return to the field is impending.

Despite returning to his club this past Sunday and sitting with traveling supporters as it took on Wigan Athletic at DW Stadium, Holden is not close to making a return to practice in the near future. The 28-year-old midfielder – who has been plagued by injuries since 2010 – is currently recovering from a torn ACL in his right knee that was sustained during the 2013 Gold Cup final back in July and Trotters manager Dougie Freedman says it will probably take another two months before Holden can begin training again.

“If we’re being honest, he’s still got a long way to go,” Freedman told Bolton’s official website. “Don’t expect to see him out on the pitch in the coming weeks, but knowing Stuart and his mentality, he’s working as hard as he possibly can to get back out there.

“The plan is pretty straightforward. Stuart is back over here to spend a few weeks with our medical guys. We’ll see where he is, and then he’ll head back to the US to continue his rehabilitation. The main reason for that is because he’s already started his rehab work over there. The weather is also better for him to work in. Once he has made significant progress on that front, probably about six to eight weeks, he’ll then come back to us to step up the work on the football side of things.”

The timetable for recovery does not completely rule out Holden from making the U.S. Men’s National Team roster for next summer’s World Cup, but it does make it extremely difficult given the short window he will have to return to form and receive minutes.

Holden was recently stateside, serving as a coach in the Brian Ching Testimonial Match at BBVA Compass Stadium this past Friday.

Through 20 matches, Bolton currently sit in 16th place in the Championship.


What do you think of the timeframe for Holden returning to Bolton training? Think it is too late for him to make a serious push at the U.S.’s World Cup roster? Still cannot believe how much bad luck he has had in recent years?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Strider257

    Although I would LOVE for Stu to be part of the WC team, I am more concerned about him taking time to be ready to resume his career. He should not push overly hard to be ready for the Cup, but merely needs to progress at the best pace he can to be sure not to reinjure himself. One more major injury and he’ll be another John O’Brien. If he’s ready in time for the Cup that’s great, but that should be seen as a potential bonus, not the sole goal.


  • Dennis

    While I wish him well, unless a plethora of injuries hit the USMNT midfield, he is very unlikely to get much of a shot at Brazil. An optimist would have him training with Bolton in late Feb. early March, maybe making an appearance in April or early May and even getting in a full game before the season ends. That is not enough unless the US is getting desperate.

    He has demonstrated that he can work through difficult situations and that mental toughness is something that will allow him to excel again, if only he can avoid more serious injuries.


    • Jake

      If an optimist would say Late Feb, why does the article 6-8 weeks. That would have an optimist saying Late Jan or early Feb. Still a tough road to get back and healthy in time to make the list for Brazil.


      • Joamiq

        It says he’s spending a few weeks in England, THEN 6-8 weeks of rehab. So late Feb is optimistic for him returning to training.


    • Clyde Frog

      From a USMNT perspective let’s hope so. O’Brien put in arguably the best WC performance by a field player in USMNT history in 2002.


      • Chicago Josh

        To me JOB and Tony Sanneh were the unsung heros of that 2002 WC team. Both of them played out of their minds, and Sanneh really should have done better with a header he had against Germany with Chewbacca…sorry, I mean Kahn…beaten.


  • deacon0228

    I feel if by some chance we end up taking him on the squad. It would be Reyna 06′ falling to the ground all over again.


  • beto

    gotta respect Bolton. they have actually had him for 30 games over 4 years and endured how many injuries and still allowed him to go on loan and play with the USMNT when he was healthy. still optimistic as always..


  • DC Josh

    So basically, there is really no update. He is still 3-4 months from making a first-team appearance.


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