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Donovan says status for USMNT is “TBD” after suffering knee injury vs. RSL

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Photo by Matt Ersted/


CARSON, Calif.–Landon Donovan winced in pain as he tried putting pressure on his left knee, and as he walked gingerly toward the LA Galaxy locker room after Saturday's 2-1 loss to Real Salt Lake, it appeared less and less likely that he would make his return to the U.S. national team for next week's crucial World Cup qualifiers.

After the match, Donovan said his knee would be evaluated as soon as possible, and said it was "TBD (To Be Determined)" whether he would join the national team for the upcoming training camp ahead of qualifiers against Antigua & Barbuda (Friday) and Guatemala (Oct. 16th).

Donovan came down awkwardly after taking a left-footed shot from the left flank and then planting his left foot in the ground in a way that left him writhing in pain afterward. He left the match soon after and could be seen limping toward the locker room after the match.

"As soon as possible," Donovan said when asked when he would have his left knee evaluated. "I'm not sure when, but as soon as possible."

When asked if the injury put him out of the upcoming qualifiers, Donovan said "TBD."

If Donovan is forced the miss the upcoming USMNT qualifiers, it would mark the second set of qualifiers he has been forced to miss due to injury. He missed the U.S. qualifiers against Jamaica in September as he recovered from a hamstring injury he suffered while on national team duty against Mexico in August.

The severity of the injury suffered on Saturday is still not known, but when asked if he heard a pop when the injury happened Donovan said no.

After the match, Donovan seemed more focused on the Galaxy losing an important Western Conference match against RSL than about missing another set of qualifiers.

"I think we're just disappointed in the game in general," Donovan said when asked about the frustration of being injured before important national team matches yet again. "We're not really worried about that part right now."

If Donovan is forced to withdraw, U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann could wind up calling in D.C. United's Chris Pontius, while Club Tijuana winger Jose Corona is also an option.


  1. I’m not sure if you’ve been watching, but Donovan has quietly racked up more assists in the run of play than anyone else in MLS. Remember, he isn’t LA’s regular free kick and corner kick taker, and Zusi is KC’s.

    Zusi strikes the ball better and holds off defenders a bit better, but Donovan still sees passes that Zusi doesn’t see. Also, speed kills, and Zusi has neither Donovan’s speed of thought nor Donovan’s foot speed.

  2. and what does Donovan bring? I don’t know because he is not consistant or do you have time machine somewhere to bring the old one back.

  3. “sorely missed” you mean the good LD or the transparent LD. Frankly, I have no idea which one would show up, so if can’t play I rather chose to believe the the bad LD couldn’t play.

  4. Don’t underestimate Landon’s form this season. He’s up there with Zusi on the assists chart despite 1) missing a month with an injury and 2) not taking free kicks and corner kicks most of the time.

    The two play very different games anyway.

  5. Without Donovan and Shea I wouldn’t mind seeing pontius and DMb called in.



    Dmb has been playing well in mx and has wcq experience. Bring in pontius 2nd half to bleed him a little.

    Both Bette options than Torres now

  6. He doesn’t make it out for US games on FIFA 13 either, so it MUST be official.

    It’s hard to see him break down so often. Are there any other teams who have so many key players get the injury bug? Donovan, Holden, Gooch, and Davies had locked down starting spots so that’s a third of the starting 11.

    I think if we don’t have Donovan than we need Shea. His form is bad, but he rocks it as a late game sub who opens holes by running at multiple defenders and passing the ball into the open space, similar to Donovan’s style at Everton.

  7. not! Zusi is great but he is nothing compared to an in-form donovan. also you need 2 wings to fly.

    too bad, i hope he can play for the guatemala game.

  8. I agree with Biff…there is no denying LD’s experience and the brilliance he can bring. The problem is, even when playing, the brilliant moments are fewer and farther between.

    LD is a legend, who has stolen the hearts of every American. He was the most influential American soccer player of at least his generation, maybe of all time. I also believe there are great USMNT team moments still within him…but I can now imagine life after LD, and we will be OK.

    Let’s be honest…in the recent years after the miracle goal, haven’t you been wanting the “old Landon” to return? Maybe we just have an old Landon.

  9. That is bad news, but, with all due respect to Donovan, I am growing accustomed to seeing the USMNT play without him and I also think Zusi will play right wing as well as Donovan might have, if not better.

  10. I was at the game. this really did not look good. He was down for a good five minutes. He refused the stretcher and tried to walk it off and couldn’t. Galaxy pretty much laid down and died once he went off. Let’s hope the USMNT doesn’t do the same.

  11. Well that pretty much opens up spots for Pontius and Gatt.

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see Freddy Adu called in either.

    USMNT supporters better be praying to the soccer gods that Dempsey goes unscathed in tomorrows game.


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