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MLS Notes: Timbers’ Valencia needs surgery, Folan leaves Colorado and more


After an offseason full of major moves, promise and tangible signs of improvement, the Portland Timbers were hit with a sizeable dose of bad news Friday. 

Colombian striker Jose Adolfo Valencia, signed as a Young Designated Player back in December, requires knee surgery to repair damaged cartilage in his left knee and is going to be out for anywhere from the next 6-to-12 months. According to a team press release, he will have surgery on Monday, followed by an extensive rehabilitation process.

As a result, the Timbers re-worked their loan agreement with Valencia's parent club, Colombian side Santa Fe, and Valencia will not count as a Young DP this season, nor will he occupy an international roster spot as he spends the season on the disabled list.

"Our No. 1 priority is ensuring the long-term physical health of Jose," Timbers general manager Gavin Wilkinson said in a statement. "We are very committed to Jose as a person and as a player, and intend to return to the original terms of his transfer agreement when he returns to full health following rehabilitation. We feel strongly about our long-term commitment to Jose and see him as a big part of the future success of this team."

Here are a few more items from around MLS:


The Caleb Folan era in Colorado lasted one season.

The club and the Irish striker mutually agreed to part ways, according to a team press release. The move should free up considerable cap space for the Rapids, as Folan was due $203,375 in guaranteed compensation last season, according to MLS Players Union documents.

He scored six goals for the club in his year in MLS, providing depth for the club up top when Conor Casey's season ended prematurely with a torn Achilles tendon. According to the Denver Post, Casey is still likely a couple of weeks from returning to full practice. The initial timetable after his injury set the return date for the end of March, and he appears to be on schedule to meet that.


After guiding the Philadelphia Union as their inaugural season captain, veteran centerback Danny Califf passed on the armband to goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon last season.

With Mondragon returning to his native Colombia, Califf is re-inheriting the armband and was named the club's captain by manager Peter Nowak. After the departures of Mondragon, Sebastien Le Toux, Stefani Miglioranzi, Justin Mapp and Velkjo Paunovic, Califf is one of the few veteran players remaining on the Union's youthful roster.


One of Chivas USA's newest signings, Marvin Iraheta, suffered a torn ACL in the club's scrimmage against Ventura County Fusion last week and is out for the next six months.

The 19-year-old Iraheta, an El Salvador native and former member of the New York Cosmos west-based academy that merged with Chivas USA, will have surgery to repair the injury, but the club has not ruled him out for the entire season just yet.


Disappointed that Valencia won't see the field this year? What did you think of Folan's season in MLS? Think Califf is the right choice to be the Union's captain? Did you think Iraheta would compete for minutes this year?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Isn’t Holden’s latest layoff from a surgery to repair damaged cartilage? I think the original time frame for his was 6-8 months.

    Not knowing much about it, I would guess the very broad time frame for Valencia will be narrowed after the surgery when the extent of the damage and repair is fully known.

  2. Folan is a talented player, but he never found his rhythm in MLS play. Like most newcomers, it usually takes about a year to adjust. I guess his style didn’t fit into the new coach’s plans…

  3. The Valencia deal was not a Loan at first but has been reworked to a 1 year loan and if he recovers well then the option to buy will be used. This just covers Portland’s for taking an injured player on loan.

  4. Except the people running things in Portland (Paulson, Wilkinson, Spencer) referred to Valencia as a project for the future with great potential, even before the failed medical. It’s disappointing for sure, but he would have been treated like a first round draft pick this year as far as expectations and playing time.

  5. Everyone was hyping Valencia up but Portland still has exciting attacking players. Too bad for Timbers and Chivas to lose new signings to injuries before they could be tested in MLS.


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