The transfer rumors might be swirling, but Rodolfo Pizarro is not going anywhere.
That is the message Inter Miami head coach Phil Neville delivered emphatically on Thursday.
Speculation about Pizarro’s future with Inter Miami has run rampant in recent weeks given the Mexican’s lack of playing time with the Herons. Pizarro has not played in either of the South Florida side’s last two games, and reports out of Mexico earlier this month linked him with a return to Chivas de Guadalajara.
Neville stated on Thursday, however, that Pizarro is staying put.
“There is no possibility of Rodolfo leaving this football club,” said Neville. “He is an Inter Miami player. He is injured at this moment in time. We cannot stop the speculation, but the speculation why he is not playing is because he is injured. He has gone away with Mexico and he is injured.
“I am not going to answer any more questions on Rodolfo Pizarro. I think I have spoke and told you how many times that he is a big part of what we want to do here and he is happy here.”
Pizarro’s last appearance for Inter Miami was a one-minute cameo in a 3-2 win vs. FC Cincinnati on May 16. He has been dealing with an adductor injury since then, according to Neville, and is not expected to be available for selection for the “foreseeable future.”
“It is recovering really well, but it is taking longer than we think,” said Neville. “He is obviously not going to be available for this weekend or for the weekend after probably.”
Here are more notes from Inter Miami camp:
Herons getting back to basics
Inter Miami has had three weeks off from games to fine-tune things, and Neville’s side has largely used that time to get back to basics.
The Herons lost three of their last four matches before the start of the international break, leading Neville and his technical staff to conduct an “extensive review” into the team’s first eight games of the year to see what needed improvement. One of the things that was identified was returning to being a side that is tough to play against and beat, something that has not been the case in several of the recent performances.
“We have really been working on playing together and working for each other and I think then the soccer comes after that,” said winger Brek Shea. “I think we have got to get back to basics, like we have been (doing) in the last few weeks.”
“Maybe we were just on different pages,” added Shea when asked why team has not always played as a cohesive collective. “Obviously it is difficult when you go through a new team and then you have a new staff and everything.”
Robinson, Guediri recovering from injuries
Pizarro is not the only member of Inter Miami’s walking wounded right now. Left winger Robbie Robinson is still recovering from his repeated hamstring issues and is out indefinitely while left back Sami Guediri is dealing with an injury that was picked up while playing for Fort Lauderdale CF during the international break.
Sources have told SBI that neither player was on the travel roster for Inter Miami’s closed-door scrimmage vs. Toronto FC in Orlando, Florida, this past weekend.
Marsman, Gibbs still not in camp
Two other players who are not currently practicing with Inter Miami are goalkeeper Nick Marsman and left back Kieran Gibbs. The two relatively-recent signings are eligible to play for Inter Miami as of July 1, but neither has joined the team for training sessions yet.