Top Stories

Chandler to miss rest of Bundesliga season with knee injury, could force him out of USMNT qualifiers

TimmyChandlerUSMNT (

Photo by


Timmy Chandler is done playing for the current German Bundesliga season, and could wind up missing the U.S. Men’s National Team’s upcoming World Cup qualifiers after being sidelined with what is being reported as a torn knee ligament suffered during a training session with German side Nuremberg.

The timetable on the injury is a three-to-four week recovery, which would have him back after the start of U.S. Men’s National Team camp, which kicks off later this month. With qualifiers scheduled for June 7th (at Jamaica), 11th (vs. Panama) and 18th (vs. Honduras), Chander could theoretically be back in time, but there is no guarantee he would be able to regain match fitness in time to play in those qualifiers.

Chandler missed the U.S. team’s most recent qualifiers, in March, due to what was reported at the time as an injury, but he proceeded to start and play 90 minutes in Nuremberg’s first match after those qualifiers. That helped revive some lingering questions about his commitment to the U.S. team.

Chandler was cap-tied to the United States after starting in the team’s qualifying loss in Honduras in February, which settled any questions about him potentially holding out for a call-up from Germany, but his absence in March, and subsequent appearance for Nuremberg less than a week later raised some eyebrows.

Chandler was not guaranteed to have a regular starting place for the U.S. in the upcoming matches, what with Steve Cherundolo and Geoff Cameron serving as the leading candidates to start at right back. Left back is another option for Chandler, but Fabian Johnson’s presence and DaMarcus Beasley’s return to form have given Jurgen Klinsmann options there as well.

And if Chandler can’t recover in time for the upcoming qualifiers? He might wind up skipping the summer entirely, what with Klinsmann making it clear he won’t call in European-based players for the Gold Cup who don’t take part in the May-June matches. That said, Klinsmann could choose to bring Chandler into May camp to let him rehabilitate the knee with the U.S. team, with an eye toward having him play a role in the qualifiers against Panama and Honduras.

What do you think of this development? Disappointed that he probably won’t feature in the upcoming qualifiers? Are you over the whole Tim Chandler saga? Think the USMNT need him?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I am glad Chandler will not be in US team. He was terrible in USA Vs Honduras game. He has commitment issue.

  2. Never wish injury on a player, but I’d be lying if I didnt say I’ll be relieved to not have him in the USMNT picture.

  3. Would be nice to see him called into camp to begin to regain match fitness, ride some pine for the qualifiers, then stick around for the Gold Cup….

  4. Heres a question hopefully someone in Ive’s-Land can answer…

    With the Gold Cup starting 3 weeks after the 3rd qualifier, what will the camp(s) look like?

    Will JK have 1 camp before qualifiers & then another before the Gold Cup? If so will he call in more than 22-23 guys?

    Just curious how it will work this summer….

  5. RB Depth Chart:

    1st – Dolo
    2nd – Cameron
    3rd – Timmy II

    Stay Calm and remember he wouldn’t even dress.

  6. by the rest of the season, you mean 2 guys, right? because that’s all Nurnberg has left to play. i don’t think TC is playing games, but i think his team continues to jerk the USMNT and klinsmann around so that he can get a full off season

  7. Beitashour has now played 3 full games for the Quakes after missing the early season due to an sports hernia aggravated in the USMNT training camp in January and subsequent surgery for the repair. He has played well for the Quakes and can get forward and deliver very good crosses. If healthy, he is a strong alternative to Chandler as Dolo’s back-up.

      • And before people start screaming at me, just want to note I am a huge fan of Jermaine Jones and Fabian Johnson and Terrence Boyd. My point on the comment is that I think there is a tendency of some USMNT fans to assume that foreign born players are automatically better than those Booooorn in the USAaaa. I truly believe that if Timothy Chandler had been born in Poughkeepsie and spoke perfect English and played in the MLS at exactly the same skill level he does now, which is not that good, that most fans would not want him on the USMNT. Because he was born in Germany I think a lot of fans are exaggerating his soccer abilities and I think it is not fair to guys like Dennis is touting who no doubt want to play in WC 2014 just as bad as Timothy Chandler.

      • I’m with you, Chandler’s form is terrible right now, and for the last 6 months tbh.

  8. Love the wording on the news story up above: “…due to what was reported at the time as an injury…” and “…later raised some eyebrows.”

    Probably true that he is injured, but he has been in bad form for months and warmed the bench on Saturday and Nurnberg’s upcoming last two games are totally meaningless and will give the coach a chance to evaluate potentially better talent and I have no doubt that Timothy has no desire to face the German National Team while wearing a US shirt, so, yes, I am also a bit skeptical and definitely not surprised by the news. I expected it.

    In any case, no big loss for the USMNT as Dolo and Cameron are definitely better than Chandler and possibly so are Lichaj and Parkhurst. I have been advocating for a couple of weeks now that the Gold Cup is better suited for Timothy, who, let’s not forget, has only played two games for the USMNT in 18 months while others the past year have been flying back and forth from Europe to sweat blood for WCQ games. Playing in the Gold Cup would not only help acclimate Timothy to the fun of Concacaf competition, but would be a chance for him to show he is truly committed by making the difficult trip over from Europe to wear the shirt during the summer, trips that guys like Dempsey and Cameron and Bradley and Howard and Edu and many others are glad to make for the cause.

    And quite frankly, the Gold Cup would give Klinsmann the chance to better evaluate Chandler to determine whether he truly deserves a spot on regular USMNT roster. It never ceases to amaze me when people ooooh and aaaaah over Chandler as if he is the second coming of Pele and that he already has earned the right to be named the heir apparent to Cherundolo. Why? Give me a frickin’ break.

    • Who else do you think should be “Named the heir apparent to Cherundolo”???
      At 34 Dolo is coming to end of his international career, be it in 3 months or 18, it is coming. Identifying a successor (or 3) is in the best interest of the USNT as a hole.
      As of now there are 3 likely candidates to backfill the RB spot when Dolo retires…
      1) Cameron – Plays CB for USNT, can be a RB or CDM. 2) Chandler – currently 1st choice backup @ RB, can play LB & RM, 3) Lichaj – Plays either RB or LB, but hasn’t seen much club PT this year, 4) Parkhurst – Plays RB, provides cover @ a pinch for CB & LB, hasn’t seen much time since moving to German Club, and isn’t likely to play at the international level much longer due to age and lack of speed.
      Therefore until someone else is identified as being better than Chandler at RB or Cameron at CB he will likely remain the heir apparent to Dolo.

      • there is no requirement for an ‘heir apparent’. obviously someone will replace cherundolo eventually, but ‘heir apparent’ implies that the competition future RB is over already.

        and biff, i’ve said this before: people haven’t forgotten when chandler made his first appearances for us–he terrorized the right flank (in a good way, not a honduras-US way).

      • Maybe is the term and it’s interpretation…to me “heir apparent” is the most likely person to fill the role after the current player departs. I don’t see it as a forgone conclusion that he will be the the future starter….just that at the moment he appears to be the most likely candidate to claim that spot on the team.
        Over time form can very, Injuries occur, and new talent may rise to surpass someone. Who knows what will ultimately happen…but will be nice to have multiple options/candidates for when Dolo does retire.

      • @Lost in Space: Just a couple of quick friendly points, not trying to provoke an argument.

        First, you say Cameron plays CB for the USMNT. Well, he has in he past. But in March he played right back quite well against both Costa Rica and Mexico, not to mention playing most of this season at RB for Stoke. In my opinion, Geoff Cameron is not only a better right back than Timothy Chandler, but, quite frankly, a better soccer player with about twice the heart. And as long as Cameron is playing fullback for Stoke I do not see him as a first-choice CB for the USMNT. We need to fill CB slots with players who are CBs at their clubs and we have some promising young talent who did a great job against Mexico, as in a clean sheet.

        Second, you say that Lichaj has been riding the pine a lot this season. Well, this true, but some of that is due to injury. Lichaj played well this past weekend in a must-win game under extreme waves and waves of pressure on his side of the field. Plus, Lichaj has as many caps as Timothy Chandler and has played as well if not better in those caps as Chandler has in his. I think it almost unforgivable that Klinsmann will call in someone like Alfredo Morales in January who had not even been making the bench for Berlin for months in order to give him a boost, but has completely ignored Lichaj thus far, even though we have several times been very thin at the fullback position.

        As for Parkhurst, yes he has had tough luck at Augsburg, first with a bad viral infection and then injury. But if I were coach of the USMNT and I had to choose either Parkhurst or Chandler to start a game in WC 2014, then I know that I sure as heck would have more confidence in Parkhurst doing a good job than Chandler.

      • To your points…
        Cameron played RB in March qualifiers primarily due to the lack of options left at RB. With Dolo, Chandler, Spector injured and Parkhurst & Lichaj not playing/sick there weren’t many options. We’ll see in the next couple camps how the coaches see Geoff going forward. If its as a RB that’s fine, but IMO he’s still a 1st choice NT CB until benched for Gonzo/Besler or someone else.
        I actually like Lichaj and think he’s been over looked by JK and his staff. I’d be very happy to have him back in the fold and competing for the RB or LB spots. I think he is a very underrated player who can/will eventually shine with the Nats if given an opportunity by JK. I personally rate him higher than Castillo at the LB spot against European compitition (can play more physically).
        As for Parkhurst…that is where I differ in opinion. While he is a savy positional player who reads the game well…I think his lack of speed coupled with his current lack of PT and age places him well behind both Chandler & Lichaj as perspective backups to Dolo.
        Anyway my 2 cents

  9. Crying wolf and a real injury is hard to distinguish with Tim Chandler. What is the truth? Beaches in Spain starting next week for R&R? I will not miss him now or his antics in the past. He will be better off rehabbing with the USMNT for qualifiers and to get ready for the Bundesliga. He’s to young to be TIRED! Tim Chandler is all about Tim Chandler first.

  10. “Left back is another option for Chandler, but Fabian Johnson’s presence and DaMarcus Beasley’s return to form have given Jurgen Klinsmann options there as well.”

    ives: was not mentioning castillo just an oversight, or is there something i don’t know?

  11. Im not too worried. I dont feel like Timmy is THE GUY anymore. We have other options at those positions. Let him heal and start playing again and go from there.

    • You really expect Boca to keep up with the Jamaicans and Panamanians and Hondurans(much less Germans and Belgians)? This is the guy who pulled up lame the first time the Russians went after him.

      Maybe against Belize.

  12. losing him is not that big a deal, unless Cherundolo can’t go either. It’s mainly a depth issue, it would be nice for him to be there, but we’ll probably be okay without him.

  13. Justin Morrow has been playing left back for the ‘Quakes. ‘Been called up before, maybe we can send him if we have the extra position available. He’s been looking good playing a position that is not his natural one.

    • Rather see Tony Beltran, I like him more because he can push up the field like a boss. Which would hopefully make a little width. Also he has been in pretty good form for Real Salt Lake.

    • Right! Time for all of our first and second choice fullbacks to suddenly disappear. No surprise chandler is the first..

  14. Not as bummed about this as I would have been a year ago. Cherundolo’s been doing his usual thing and Cameron has really come on as a backup/starter. With Johnson and Castillo available on the left and Gonzalez, Besler, and Goodson in the middle, along with Bocanegra (if), not too worried about the back line.

    WAAAAAAAY more worried about the lack of creativity and width in the midfield. Maybe move Fabian forward?

    • +1 he was the second choice RB, too bad but it wont change the starting xi.

      If Cameron is a possibility for RB i hope George John gets a call up.

      I like the idea of Johnson moving up to LW and Castillo at LB but hopefully Donovan fills the creative spark role some point this summer.

  15. Don’t need him for WCQ, but I hope this doesn’t rule out (but rather confirms) his spot on the Gold Cup alongside Stu.

  16. This is a situation where the clinical precision of torn knee ligaments is probably less helpful than the colloquial “sprain” or “blown” knee. Though the article says “torn” the recovery period sounds like “sprain.” 4-6 weeks, which would probably mean he’s in fact out for the qualifiers.

    • Here’s what you need to know about knee sprains/tears:

      Knee sprains are graded in terms of severity: Grade 1 – internal tearing/lengthening, Grade 2 – partial tearing, Grade 3 – complete tearing. Sprain and tear are used interchangeably.

      There are 4 main ligaments in the knee. Medial Collateral (MCL), Lateral Collateral (LCL, which is part of the posterolateral corner), Anterior cruciate (ACL), and Posterior Cruciate (PCL). They are all treated differently (see the generalization that follows):

      Grade 1 injuries regardless of the ligament involved are usually treated without surgery (temporary bracing and/or PT)

      MCL sprains are almost always treated without surgery. Grade 1 injuries generally take 4 wks to heal, grade 2 injuries 6-8 wks, and grade 3 injuries 8+ wks, but grade 3 injuries are usually accompanied by another ligamentous injury, such as an ACL tear.

      Grade 2 or 3 ACL sprains/tears usually require ACL reconstruction and ~9mo rehab period.

      Grade 1-2 PCL sprains are usually treated effectively without surgery (typically 6-8 wks of PT), Grade 3 sprains/tears are generally operative and require ~9mo of rehab

      LCL and/or posterolateral corner injuries are more controversial, but generally grade 1-2 isolated injuries are treated nonsurgically (6-8 wks of PT). Grade 2 injuries with another ligamentous injury may require surgery, and grade 3 injuries usually require surgery (and rarely happen in isolation).

      • I am aware of such. My issue was that the article by using clinical terms but without the degrees — which you point out — actually tells me less than if they just said sprain or blown knee. Sprain or blown knee would actually be more precise.

      • I agree that knowing the ligament and severity would be more helpful. I disagree that using the term “blown knee” would be more precise. That’s a term that is not used clinically and can mean very different things (isolated complete ACL, multiligamentous injury/dislocation). I think that based on the report “torn ligament” and 3-4 week timetable, he probaly has a low grade MCL injury (as this would be the most common). That is just speculation, though.

      • I sprained a MCL playing indoor a few years back and my knee was stiff for weeks. My experience was more like 6 weeks. But I didn’t have pro training facilities, team doctor.

        Darnedest injury because it’s like one thing you’re in some tackle and the knee hyperextends, next thing you jog a few steps and suddenly it doesn’t want to bend anymore.

      • A good therapist and athletic trainer goes a long way. You have no idea what kind of resources these professional guys have access to. I wish I could get all of my patients that level of TLC!

      • Thx for sharing the medical perspective, in relative detail. SBI still has a comment section that stays respectful and intellectual; I hope it stays that way.

        Wish I could send you an MRI of my knee :/

  17. Hopefully Klinsi will add another spot to the camp in order to bring in another healthy player. Have Chandler come in re-hab, hang out with the guys, do the X’s and O’s thing, and then either send him home or make an exception and include him in the Gold Cup.

    In my mind the Gold Cup shouldn’t be a roster full of B teamers. Similar to Stu Holden who’s an A teamer working his way back from injury…having 1st team guys sprinkled throughout the roster (and who didn’t play in the qualifiers) makes a lot of sense. Biggest difference is Chandler is coming off a grueling Bundesliga season whereas Holden needs all the matches he can get.

  18. No need for Chandler right now… He has been hot and cold this season and hopefully will get back to barnbusting again. He is young…

    No need for Lichaj or Parkhurst when we have Castillo playing at the best he’s played in years and AT LEFT BACK. Not to mention he can play forward like a boss. I say use him while his confidence is high. Put Fabian on the LW. Either way regardless of if only one starts at LB, we have that on lock. Stevie and Camerones can handle the RB.

    • I agree. If we played tomorrow we have: Castillo and Johnson as probably starters for LB and Dolo and Cameron as RBs. We also have Beasley if we’re in a fix for LB and Parkhurst/Lichaj if we’re really desperate.

      Chandler is a blow. But luckily it’s not a critical one.

    • Been saying this for months on end! This is easily our best option, Klinsi just hasn’t played it yet for some odd reason, and injuries.

  19. Chandler is too much for me. Drop him. Lichaj or Parkhurst can handle the leftback position for now. I’m sure we should have another discovery for leftback by the WC.

    • Like it’s his fault he hurts his knee.

      Parkhurst is slow as molasses — a trait that cannot be improved by soccer IQ or passing ability (Spector, ahem) — and Lichaj has not been given PT to acclimate.

    • 1st Parhurst is a RB who played 1 game at LB due to Johnson & Castillo being sick/inured. 2nd He’s rooted to the bench on a German team being religated. 3rd he’s a player who is likely reaching the end of his effectivness.
      Lichaj is an option for both RB & LB depth…but he too hasn’t seen much time for his club, and as such would be a shock call up for the May/June camp or the GC.
      Face it Chandler is and should be called up. He is a young talented player who provides cover at both Wing Back positions and also as a wide midfielder. His versitility alone keeps him in the top 25 of the USNT Player Pool. Making the cut to the game day roster on the otherhand is a subject to his and his compititions form.

      • Lichaj hasn’t seen the day he can carry Parkhurst’s jock. I would be amazed if Lichaj ever gets another call.

        As I have been saying every time this comes up… Parkhurst is being punished for his team not playing him. He was doing fine with the NATs before trying to make the jump to Germany. I hope JK calls him in for the Gold cup to get him some time

      • Then how is Parkhurst’s situation different from Lichaj’s?

        Thanks for bringing objectivity and quality commentary to this board.

      • I don’t know about the jock carrying, but I do think there’s a difference in that Parkhurst had just a couple of months back played a couple of good games for the NT, was absolutely killing it for Nordsjaelland (e.g. got named for Champions League “Team of the Week” at least once), and his NT player pool standing seemed to be on the rise… right up until until the transfer left his on a bench.

        Lichaj, otoh, hasn’t had a callup in ages, got benched b/c he was playing terribly for Aston Villa early in the season (tbh, I didn’t see many of those games, so just taking that from what I’d read about why he wasn’t playing), and hasn’t been heard from since.

        So yeah, they seem a bit different to me. Though they are both in the same boat of guys who could maybe contribute, but can’t get a club game in to prove themselves.

      • Lichaj did play the last 60-70 for Villa last weekend, and has been actually making the bench regularly, but at roughly midseason his use essentially shifted to cups, with the odd injury sub in EPL.

        The situation with all the injuries and people not playing is so messed that it’s like a toss up. Even some of the conventional alternative picks like Cameron are sitting a lot. So it’s like how do you compare a Villa benchwarmer to a Stoke irregular to a Augsburg irregular, etc. How does the hit and miss Castillo figure in? etc.

        I personally like Lichaj but the way Klinsi has (not) approached him makes it hard to leapfrog him past people who I don’t think are better but have played with the team. Maybe if he showed up at the start of camp and played both friendlies first. Kind of like I’d advocate for Holden and Donovan. Give him a few weeks and Gold Cup too and see what you get at the end…..but even then he might not be ready until the regional tournament, as opposed to the qualis.

    • you know the injury is real because he is missing Bundesliga time… when he missess USMNT games it’s a 50/50, scratch that 25/75 he’s not hurt…

      I have no doubt he’s hurt, but I doubt he’ll make any effort to heal up for the qualifiers- too bad for him, because given Klinsi’s talk about Donovan, missing time and lack of chemistry with USMNT will push him way down the chart, right Klinsi apologists?

      • You have so much knowledge you should have your own site. Oh, wait, no you are literally making grand suppositions and reading into situations based on your own bias. Shocking, what with your name being a crappy candy. That’s enough to disqualify your opinion, but I read – mistakenly – away and was disappointed. I guess I was expecting a hot tamale.

      • Yeahhhh I’m pretty sure dos Santos and Guardadado were finding space on Dolo’s side before he even came off injured. The real turning point was Salcido getting subbed out since we had quite a bit of success with Adu and Dempsey exploiting him. Once Torres Nilo came on we couldn’t find the same space and the rest is history.

Leave a Comment