MLS Soccer

Sounders defender Torres likely out 6-9 months, maybe more

Sounders central defender Roman Torres, right, celebrates with Tyrone Mears after they beat the Portland Timbers last month. Torres tore his anterior cruciate ligament Saturday against San Jose and will miss betwee six and nine months.
Sounders central defender Roman Torres, right, celebrates with Tyrone Mears after they beat the Portland Timbers last month. Torres tore his anterior cruciate ligament Saturday against San Jose and will miss betwee six and nine months. The Associated Press

The Seattle Sounders’ bad news from Monday got worse Tuesday, and there’s a chance it could turn darker still.

A day after the club confirmed that centerback Roman Torres had been lost for the season with a knee injury, general manager Garth Lagerwey confirmed that Torres had suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament. Lagerwey said the standard time lost to such an injury is six to nine months. And although he stressed doctors wouldn’t know the full extent of the injury until the surgery is performed, he added “I think it’s fair to say it’s not going to be shorter than six to nine months, at least to my knowledge.”

Six months would put Torres back around the start of the 2016 Major League Soccer regular season. Nine months would be closer to the All-Star Game.

Lagerwey went on to say, “This is a bad injury, and you can’t control it and we’ll do the best we can with it to try and help Roman and try to let him know that we support him and will be behind him throughout the rehab process, and hopefully he’s back in a Sounders uniform next season at some point.”

He was asked about that last phrase, starting with “hopefully.”

“Until you get in there and you understand the full extent of the injury, we don’t know,” he said. “That’s why I qualify my answer by saying ‘hopeful.’ A normal ACL rehab, you’d expect him back next year. But until you get in there and you understand, you have to qualify it. Maybe I’m over-lawyering it … but we’re hopeful.”

Torres, 29, signed with Seattle last month after a standout performance with the Panama national team in the CONCACAF Gold Cup. He immediately moved into the starting lineup alongside Chad Marshall. He was injured Saturday at San Jose, in just his fourth MLS appearance.

The Sounders reacted by moving 2014 first-round draft pick Damion Lowe into Torres’ spot on the roster. Beyond that, the hole must be filled by existing players, as the MLS roster freeze arrived Tuesday.

“We’ve had Brad (Evans) play centerback before, and we’ve got (Zach Scott, who) can play centerback,” coach Sigi Schmid said. “We’re looking a little bit long-term, a little bit short-term, what the best solutions are. Brad and me chatted (Tuesday morning). So no matter what the solution is, maybe he’s playing the odd game back there if we’re going with Zach, or he maybe he goes back there (full time). We’ll see.”

Schmid added that Lowe “certainly deserves some consideration.”

The Sounders return to league play at 4 p.m. Saturday at Western Conference-leading Vancouver. Seattle is in fourth place, six points behind the Whitecaps and three points clear of San Jose, the first team below the playoff red line.

ADDED TIME

Schmid began his Tuesday media session with a statement of thanks to the fans who wished him well during his recent undisclosed health problem. … Evans said he is progressing through the MLS concussion protocol and expects to play this weekend. … Designated players Clint Dempsey and Nelson Valdez have been limited in training this week, but Schmid indicated both should be available Saturday. … Schmid also said he expects to have reserve keeper Troy Perkins, who didn’t travel to San Jose last weekend because of an undisclosed personal issue. … Dempsey and Evans were named Tuesday to the 35-man provisional roster for the CONCACAF Cup match between the United States and Mexico on Oct. 10 in Pasadena, California. … Seattle Reign FC announced six players have been called for international duty: Americans Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe and Kim Little, Scotland’s Rachel Corsie, Wales’ Jess Fishlock, and Denmark’s Katrine Veje. All are expected back in time for the NWSL final between Seattle and Kansas City on Oct. 1 in Portland. Tickets for that match have gone on sale. … The Tacoma Stars of the Major Arena Soccer League announced the signings of local players Mark Lee and Raphael Cox.

Don Ruiz: 253-597-8808

don.ruiz@thenewstribune.com

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