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Paul Arriola suffers serious knee injury in D.C. United preseason match

Paul Arriola suffered a knee injury on Saturday in a D.C. United preseason match, and it appears to be a serious one.

Arriola suffered a suspected ACL tear and will undergo an MRI on Sunday or Monday to determine the severity of the injury suffered on Saturday in a preseason match against Orlando City, according to the Washington Post.

The injury would be a devastating blow to Arriola and D.C. United, which is already coping with the offseason departures of Wayne Rooney and Luciano Acosta. Peruvian midfielder Edison Flores was signed, and Julian Gressel was acquired from Atlanta United, but losing Arriola would put a devastating dent in D.C. United plans heading into the 2020 season.

If Arriola has suffered a torn ACL, then it would effectively rule him out for the rest of 2020, which would be a blow to the U.S. Men’s National Team. Arriola had become a regular under Gregg Berhalter, as one of the team’s most experienced and dependable wingers.

Arriola projected to be a potential starter for the USMNT in Nations League and in World Cup qualifying in the second half of 2020, but if his knee injury is as serious as feared, then the 25-year-old could be ruled out for the rest of the year.

The timetable for recovery from a torn ACL is in the nine-month range.

Arriola has been a steady standout for D.C. United since arriving in 2017 via a $3 million transfer from Club Tijuana. The California-born midfielder has established himself as a hard-working two-way winger, versatile enough to play on either wing, in central midfield, and even at right back when needed.


  1. Devastating injury for him if indeed an ACL as well huge kiss for DCU. As for the Nats he at least figured to be in the 23 fir any major games so loss of depth for USMNT. One of my favorite players the guy who plays with passion, high work rate at both ends of pitch. Get more out of less more than be said of many who put on the Nats jersey.

  2. Although you hate to see an open spot for the MNT due to someone’s major injury, I think this is a great chance to get Weah and Reyna into the fold. Ariola is a better defender than either one but those two young ones have a very high ceiling.

  3. Who would claim that “Arriola projected to be a potential starter for the USMNT in Nations League and in World Cup qualifying in the second half of 2020”?
    At best Arriola is a back-up winger for the USMNT. Pulisic is the clear choice for one of the wing positions and Morris has been the preferred choice at the other.

    If this is a serious injury (9 months) that it just puts more emphasis on getting Reyna, Weah, and other young options integrated into the USMNT fold sooner than later. Something that Berhaulter should have been looking to do regardless.

    • Arriola started 12 out of 18 games in 2019, and played in 3 more. Only missed Panama when 1st team sat and Sept. friendlies presumably because DCU was in the middle of the playoff fight. So dismissing he was in the discussion to start in June is ignoring facts.
      It really hasn’t been decided that Pulisic is going to be a wing. CP has been largely ineffective on the wing for the US.

      • “It really hasn’t been decided that Pulisic is going to be a wing. CP has been largely ineffective on the wing for the US.” That hasn’t stopped Berhauler in the past. Roldan has been less effective as CM, yet he’s routinely been in the XI. Besides it’s easy to make a wing player ineffective if there isn’t a realistic threat on the opposite wing.
        CP on the Left with Morris on the Right has been Berhaulters preferred wings. Arriola was likely to be the back-up.
        Weah & Reyna may not be ready to be starters or as industrious on the defensive side, but both are better technical attackers.
        Preferably, If everyone is healthy, GB would switch to a 4-2-3-1 with McKennie & Adams as the 2 deep CMs. The 3 attackers would be a combination of Pulisic, Holmes/Ledezma/Pomykal, and Weah/Reyna/Llanez.
        Morris would ultimately switch to become an option at the CF position.

    • Arriola started on the wing throughout the GC with Pulisic at CAM and worked well as soon as CP moved to Wing with McKennie as CAM the offense ground to a halt against Canada and Mexico because Wes couldn’t get open. Until Ledezma, Mendez, or Aaronson show they can play as a 10 you can’t rule out CPs return there. Weah certainly seems a promising partner for CP there because both can play in or out and interchange as CP and Arriola did throughout. Arriola is not as flashy as Weah or the others you listed but he’s consistent which is why he was in line for a role on the squad. The young guys could have greater games but also some stinkers so they might not be the worth the risk say on the road in Honduras. Morris would be our 4th or 5th at best pick at CF sorry he wouldn’t beat out Zardes or even Toye at that spot. Arriola might not be of a class to take it France but he wouldn’t mess it up in Panama no one can say that about the kids. Now will find out if someone is ready when they are thrown into the fire.


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