Alex Morgan: Still no timetable for return from injury

Jeff Kassouf March 10, 2014 78

Alex Morgan, seen here on crutches in January, still isn't close to returning for Portland and the U.S. (Photo by Diane Bondareff/Invision for ChapStick/AP Images)

Alex Morgan still isn’t back to running yet, and she said on Monday at the start of Portland Thorns FC preseason camp that there is no timetable for her return.

The star U.S. striker has been out since December and limited in action since late October, when she sprained her ankle during training in San Antonio. The injury was initially ruled a sprained left ankle, but doctors later discovered a stress reaction in her talus bone.

“As of right now, there’s no real timeline to my recovery,” Morgan said. “I’ve learned that over the course of the last couple of months, that I can’t put a timeline on it. It’s a very rare and unique injury, and we are trying to treat it as well as possible.

“There is progress, but it’s slow.”

Morgan’s focus — and the priority of all parties overseeing her progress — is getting back to full health to avoid any further injury down the road, with World Cup qualifying just five months away. She has certainly been missed by the United States, who have endured a rough stretch at the 2014 Algarve Cup that included a historic 5-3 loss to Denmark on Monday. Morgan also discusses that in the interview below, courtesy of the Oregonian:

  • newsouth

    No problem, she would have saved them in all games including the poor defensive play by Rampone and Engen and Solo letting every ball get past her. 10 goals in the AC for her is no problem. Just getting in before it starts.

    • guest

      Morgan: one goal against Sweden and two goals against Germany in an out-of-form 2013. Press and Leroux: 1 goal combined against both Japan and Sweden with both in-form. Next?

      • Calci0

        To be fair, neither started against Sweden, and Press only got 20mins of play against Sweden. And why was Alex out of form at the beginning of 2013? From Nov 28th, 2012 to 13 Feb 2013 she played in 7 games. Also Leroux fired in the cross for one of Morgans goals against Germany. Alex is an elite talent no doubt, but you aren’t doing a fair comparison.

        • Why Always Me

          I dimly recall Alex playing rather poorly against Scotland and also suffering from injuries afterward. That’s probably what they’re referring to. But I agree that Press and Syd, while they didn’t light it up, weren’t all that bad either.

          • Guest

            How could she have played poorly when she was injured before the half. Your relocation is cloudy by your love for Leroux but that’s fine she’s good too.

          • W

            You got the dim part right. Morgan was playing badly and she was injured and taken off in that game around to 30 to 35 minute mark.

          • W

            I meant Morgan was not playing badly

        • Don B.

          Not comparing players here, just clearing up the Alex time line re: ‘out of form’.
          In the two games against Ireland, 11/28/12 – 3 goals, 12/1/12 – 1 goal, 1 assist.
          Three games China, 12/8, 12 and 15/12, 2 assists.
          Scotland, 2/9/13, injured first half.
          Scotland, 2/13/13, did not play.
          Iceland, 3/6/13, 1 assist.
          China, 3/8/13, 3 assists.
          This period, from China 2012 to China 2013, was the famous Alex Morgan goal scoring slump.
          Sweden, 3/11/13, 1 goal.
          Germany 3/13/13, 2 goals. (The first goal was newsworthy because it was scored by #13, in the 13th minute, on 3/13/13.)

          • gimme a break

            #13 Scores the first goal in the 13th min on 3/13/13 ,WOW !!! ,what a goal !,the best goal in women soccer’s History.

          • doge

            wow such goal much amazing

          • DON

            Do you want to hit ALEX doggie Don? LOL.

          • lolz

            No, but you want her to turn your tight end into a wide out.

          • DON

            Don’t try to flip the script on me Don. You told me you wanted her to turn your tight end into a man-hole.

          • guest

            lol wut? you’re replying to two different people you dipsh*t

          • Why Always Me

            Ah, thanks for clearing that up. =)

          • James

            Alex had 6 assist in 6 games during her so called slump. I would call that pretty damn good.

          • Why Always Me

            Heh, you don’t have to tell me that, mate. I have always said that Alex Morgan’s playmaking ability is what makes her flat out the best forward on the team.

          • Elaine

            Glad you did this Don. I can’t help but point out that during Alex’s so-called slump (China 2012-China 2013), look at her assists. 6 assists in 6 games played. That’s quite amazing really. She’s just head and shoulders above the other forwards.

        • guest

          If you’re replying to newsouth you don’t have to be fair. It’s newsouth. Dude just rags on Morgan for reasons that don’t need to be discussed. Now that she’s been out for a while and his girl Press hasn’t been scoring, he’s starting to rag on Hope. It’s pathetic.

    • guest

      First to comment on Morgan article. Typical. Can’t wait for your buddies to join your little party.

    • Don B.

      I normally wouldn’t say this on an open forum, but for you I’ll make an exception. Shut up, jerk.

      • lol

        you stfu !!!!!

        • Don B.

          Well, I guess you told me, didn’t you?

        • guest

          pathetic

          • guest

            It wasn’t pathetic when your buddy was telling newsouth to shut up.

          • guest

            newsouth is a troll

      • newsouth

        Thanks. The problem is I didn’t dis Morgan, I dissed her trolls on the board and beat them to the punch. Anyway, if you are looking for a Morgan dis, then check out Altidore’s tweet. : )

        • lol

          Nobody cares about a striker who can’t even make it on a relegation team

        • guest

          dude the only person who is more of a troll than you is steg

        • Why Always Me

          Ugh, I don’t know what annoys me more, the fact that people out there are pairing up two people just because they happen to be American forwards, or the fact that Altidore somehow thinks himself superior to Alex Morgan, when in reality he isn’t good enough to so much as lick her cleats.

    • kernel_thai

      Well Im less worried about Morgan than the other three. Morgan is faster than Wambach even on her crutches. As to the other two, Morgan’s absence was a huge opportunity for them to shine. Instead they led their team to Algarve Cup oblivion.

      • newsouth

        Funny. People need to get a grip. She’s young, will recover and be back. As you said, everyone else can get her minutes since it’s been hard to get Wambach’s minutes. It also opens up a roster sport for Hagen. I still can’t get over how well she and Press clicked. Erika Dos Santos (Brazil) had a stress fracture a couple years and made it back. It’s not like she is 34 yrs old.

        • guest

          Abby’s had less minutes in the Algarve than Press. So far, grandma Abby has had more production.

        • guest

          A couple of years? Surely you mean she had one a couple years ago? I don’t know of anyone who properly rehabbed who had a stress fracture last 2 years.

    • guest

      Are you done masturbating to Morgan’s injury? I was concerned about you for a while. Press’s scoring drought wasn’t giving you much jerk off material. Glad this news popped up so you could keep stroking. Have fun!!

      • guestt

        Are you spanking your monkey with Press’ scoring drought?

        • Guest

          Why is it assumed that everyone is male unless otherwise stated?

          • guestt

            What makes you think newsouth is a male?

          • Guest

            I don’t care what gender newsouth is. This place is like a giant pissing contest though.

          • newsouth jr

            Don’t you talk about my daddy like that.

        • guest

          Why don’t you come over and I’ll show you.

  • Jigsawwill

    Thats depressing I feel for her.

  • Sydonia

    Get the operation over with.

    • J

      Surgery is not an option since she has a reaction not a fracture so no broken bone to repair just a weakened bone to recovery.

  • Ashley

    This recovery really does seem excruciatingly and overly long for just a stress fracture, especially after the poor performance at the Algarve. The offense is just not as exciting without her. Was thinking about making the trip to the San Diego game but, like many fans, we want Alex back. Hopefully it won’t be too much later, for the sake of NWSL attendance too.

    • Why Always Me

      I honestly hope Alex’s absence doesn’t reflect too poorly on attendence. I really believe the NWSL cannot survive on star power alone, and with the possibilities of injuries, as has already been shown by Alex, we need people to come regardless of whether or not the USWNT “star” is fit and healthy or off playing one of their five hundred friendlies.

      • xanthophobe

        Agreed. Portland itself has a tremendous following and I don’t think attendance will be effected by Morgan’s absence. But when they go to other cities, people would maybe be more inclined to go if she was playing. Definitely something the NWSL needs to think about.

  • FCKCEvans

    Dang, I didn’t necessarily expect her to be ready for the start of the season but the “no timeline” is a bit concerning. Hopefully they decide soon if surgery is needed, it seems a little odd to be out this long without either a timeline or a surgery scheduled.

    • Steglitz49

      I get the impression that she is easing herself out of active participation during the NWSL. High time to get married and commenatate on the World Cup. Honeymoon on Copacabana.

      • luke

        Little football wonderbaby maybe?
        Faster, stronger than mom and dad, deadly left-foot striker, Patricia Carrasco-Morgan, 2036 NWSL player of the year? ;))

      • guest

        Don’t get newsouth too excited.

      • steglatz

        STEG ease up on the medical marijuana.

  • Reality

    This “recovery” period is inordinately long. I totally agree that she should not be back in active form until they are clear that she is well. But the information about her status has been so sparse and imprecise that one has to wonder about her actual prognosis. She is a critical part of the NT offense for the post Wambach era. The longer it takes for her be come back, the more difficult it will be to integrate the team properly in a new offensive style. She will not be the savior to turn everything around and her post recovery will have to be evaluated to see if she has lost anything in her speed and mobility. But the NT can ill afford to lose her services.

    • guest

      These types of injuries are notorious slow healers taking sometimes up to 5 months before an athlete can even run again. The good thing is it’s just a reaction the bad thing is that it was misdiagnosed and prolonged her recovery. She shouldn’t lose any speed but she will have to manage her fatigue levels all better.

      • Reality

        She will have to be cautious even after 5 months as the stress reaction can still turn into a stress fracture. Athletes are not the most patient people and I’m sure there is pressure on here, implicit and explicit to return. This is a most difficult challenge to master as it calls not for action but patience and perseverance.

        • guest

          She can play without causing further injury as long as she properly heals first then she will be fitted with a brace insert in her shoe to protect the talus bone and take the pressure off that area. It’s a slow healing injury that does not merit surgery since there is no broken bone just a weakened one. And she will have to manage her body fatigue a lot better.

    • Rdalford

      The ankle bone mentioned in the article (Talus bone) has limited blood supply and will take longer than most bones to heal. My understanding is healing may take months. We fans (and Alex) must learn patience.

      • guest

        Exactly because of the limited blood supply it heals very slowly. Thank you

      • Reality

        Excellent point about limited blood supply to that area. This is a real problem for the elderly who sustain injuries there. My grandmother had a wound on her foot which never fully healed. Fortunately Morgan is young but it must be incredibly frustrating for her.

      • HMS Beagle

        The talus bone (heel) is very strong, and nature probably made it less likely to heal quickly because it rarely suffers a bad injury. Evolution.

        • Rdalford

          Talus bone is part of the ankle.

  • luke

    That’s remarkable. Surgery is a surgery (O’Hara), but I’ve never heard of a player, besides Grant Hill, needed half year to heal an injured ankle.
    Anyways, miss you Alex!

  • Rdalford

    Alex keep following medical advice and take what ever time it takes to heal. Best wishes for a full recovery – but will take time to heal and then time to rebuild fitness. WNT and NWSL/Portland should plan/execute contingencies assuming no Alex until full medical clearance and adequate time to return to match fitness.

  • AlexH

    Is this the best that medical science can do? Can’t they just replace it with some titanium cyborg bone and then throw in some revolving metal spikes that shoot out of her ankles a la Ben Hur in case anybody gets too close? This is Alex Morgan we are talking about. America, we can do better!!!!

  • Ben

    Get the girl some milk and throw her in the sun

  • Why Always Me

    Guh, I miss fully fit Baby Horse so, so much…
    Take your time for a full recovery, I’ll wait, but it will be incredibly painful. -sigh-

  • wosofan

    Secretly hoping her timeline for return is December of 2014, so she doesn’t get busted up by the likes of Brittany Bock, or any of the Chicago Red Stars. She is not needed by the USWNT in 2014, so I think she should report to camp in December of 2014, or whenever they convene for a camp.

    Actually, I take that back — she’s a young player with a lot to learn, and Riley is a good coach, and I hope she can benefit from playing under him. Just don’t rush the return to game action, please.

    • Steglitz49

      “she’s a young player with a lot to learn”?!?! — It depends.
      At 25 with her record, Alex is hardly “young” or even inexperienced. All players can learn all of the time but, just possibly, Alex has a little less to learn. She should go to Japan and enjoy herself. Aya Miyama will show her the ropes: “Look, Alex, this is how you hit a freekick from 30 yds”.

      • Silver Frost

        No need. Morgan has Tobin Heath to consult, in Thorns camp.

    • James

      The USWNT does need Morgan for 2014 as proven in the Algarve this year and Holiday as well. So your hope for Morgan to be out that long will never happen. None of the forwards impressed this year in that tournament and have not impressed this year so far going up against the likes of Russia is not impressive and they weren’t great against Canada although glad Syd managed to score off a great run from Broon.

  • john

    Off topic, but thought you all should know. Went to the Spirit practice this am. Just as I got to the field I looked down and found a lucky penny. Clearly the title is in hand (or feet).

    • luke

      Those fans deserve it for great support last year.

    • Why Always Me

      How’d the team look? =)

  • Xanadu

    There are some really weird people on this site…

    • J

      You are the weirdest .

    • Why Always Me

      The price of fame. Or Disqus. Whichever is worse, lol.

  • guest42

    Of course turf had nothing to do with the injury since we all know turf gives just like grass and takes the pressure off your heal when you land hard. Yeah, just keep on believing that. Also these studies they make on injuries on turf vs. grass, I wonder how many were specific to women’s sports, I would bet few if any. But certainly stress on the heel bone wouldn’t have anything to do with the hardness of the playing anyway, so nothing to worry about.

    • ooops

      playing surface