MLS Ticker: Beckham returns, Soumare out for the season, and more

DavidBeckhamBack (ISIPhotos.com)

After being sidelined for three weeks, David Beckham has recovered from an ankle injury and could make his return to action for the Los Angeles Galaxy on Sunday when they take on the Colorado Rapids.

Beckham resumed training this week and is on the verge of returning to action after missing the team's past two MLS victories against the Colorado Rapids and Toronto FC. His return will present some difficult decisions for head coach Bruce Arena as he decides who to remove from a lineup that has been outstanding in recent weeks.

Marcelo Sarvas and Christian Wilhelmsson have both been playing well for the Galaxy, and either of them could wind up making way for Beckham. Sarvas has formed a solid partnership with fellow Brazilian in central midfield, while Wilhelmsson has provided a solid wing option.

Here are some other MLS items as we head into the weekend's league action:

SOUMARE OUT FOR THE SEASON

Philadelphia Union defender Bakary Soumare will miss the remainder of the regular season after undergoing successful arthroscopic surgery to fix swelling and lingering pain in the same knee he had surgically repaired earlier in the year. Soumare confirmed to SBI on Thursday that his surgery went well and that he was indeed finished for the 2012 season.

Soumare played in one match for the Union since joining the team this summer. The Union traded a first-round pick and allocation money to the Vancouver Whitecaps to secure the services of the former MLS Best XI defender, but Soumare's knee did not respond well as he worked to regain fitness in time to play for the Union.

GAUDETTE BATTLING BACK INJURY

New York Red Bulls goalkeeper Bill Gaudette is battling a back injury that could force him to miss the team's upcoming match on Saturday against Toronto FC.

Gaudette missed Red Bulls training on Thursday, and if he can't overcome the injury the Red Bulls could hand Luis Robles his first start since joining the team via lottery this summer.

Gaudette took over as the Red Bulls starting goalkeeper after rookie standout Ryan Meara was lost to a hip injury that ultimately required season-ending surgery.

MARQUEZ TO MISS TWO WEEKS

Rafa Marquez only recently made his return from a lengthy injury absence, but a hamstring injury suffered in last Saturday's draw against New England will cost the Mexican star another two weeks.

The Red Bulls stated earlier in the week that Marquez would miss the team's upcoming matches against Toronto FC and the Chicago Fire. The absence just might be a blessing for a team that had too many central midfield options, which led head coach Hans Backe to move the team's most consistent midfielder, Dax McCarty, to the unfamiliar role of right wing.

With Marquez sidelined, the Red Bulls are likely to trot out a central midfield tandem of McCarty and Tainio, though Tainio's recent form has been disappointing.

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Who do you see Arena benching to make room for Beckham? Think we'll see Soumare with the Union in 2013? Who would you start in central midfield for the Red Bulls?

Share your thoughts below.

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22 Responses to MLS Ticker: Beckham returns, Soumare out for the season, and more

  1. Kosh says:

    Maybe he should have his lousy defenders help pick the ball out of the net from time to time, that should minimize the back injuries.

    I Keeed, I keeed. ;-)

  2. Gnarls says:

    Arena’s problem is a nice one to have. If I were in his shoes, I’d swap Beckham and Sarvas for the starting spot. Not that Marcelo doesn’t deserve to start, because he’s been brilliant.

    Bruce could play a 4-5-1, move Donovan back to the wing opposite Chippen and just play Keane up top.

  3. bottlcaps says:

    What a nice dilemma, one that I’m sure most coaches in the MLS could only pray for. It’s a no brainer. You must get Beckham on the field, his pinpoint passing to the forwards or wingers and his outside-the-perimeter shooting accuracy and his set play skills make him a great weapon to have. If Arena needs him to spray passes upfield and act as a more defensive mid, then he’ll go in for Sarvas, should Arena need a winger who can move inward, put him in for Chippen. Either way, he’ll be a great addition to an already great team.

  4. WK says:

    Aye, but he’s also easier to run around- especially when pouting to the ref.

  5. beachbum says:

    my guess is Chippen will be first sub off the bench. Agree that it’s a nice situation to have

  6. Kosh says:

    Wow, now that you two lay it out there like that…this LA team is very scary. MLS Cup aside, if these guys stay fit and come back hungry I think this team could give any CONCACAF team a run for their money in the next round of CCL. LA has to make it there and The Bruce’s hunger for another MLS CUP could get in the way of that, but if they do advance – look out CCL field.

  7. William the Terror says:

    Assuming Juninho is loaned to them again next season, of course.

  8. Kosh says:

    Very true. But when the league puts into effect the new “Lampard Rule” LA may not need Juninho anyways [ducks for cover].

    I keeed, of course. I keeed. LOL

  9. Caasi Gohd says:

    You’re complicating things. Donovan and Keane up top. Chippen on the left, David on the right, Sarvas and Juninho in the middle. Fantastic Four (TM) in the back and Col. Saunders under the pipes.

    Done.

  10. Worley says:

    Magee should be the odd man out with Beckham on the right wing. Why would you bench Sarvas? He has been brilliant. Wilhelmsson gives them that true winger and he needs MLS minutes.

    Magee would be great off the bench.

  11. David says:

    Agreed…Best Lineup with Magee or Buddle off the bench

  12. El paso, tx- soccer love says:

    Magee is like a wanna be baller that can actually talk the walk, I bad for him. Buddle has just become another one hit wonder and I see him in philadelphia or timbers next season. Buddle will not break the line up unless keane leaves or donovan but becks should not be a dp by next season I think. As a matter of fact the mls will have a very interesting season next year due to the new york cosmos team, montreal tfc vancity all coming back, timbers will come back for sure hungry,red bull and galaxy will be scary teams, and what will mls do for the world cup 2014 since maybe in 2014 the cosmos might be in and san jose will their stadium. Will the new galaxy owner remodel the homedepot and will donovan stay and will kaka come and marquez leave………..

  13. YO says:

    Marquez has been an absolute disaster…

  14. JRP says:

    Considering the payroll, LA and NY can only call their season a success if they win at least two of the four: supporters shield, Concacaf, Open Cup, MLS CUP. You have to win two of three if you are spending that kind of dough.

  15. Cedeno says:

    It is time for a 4th DP

  16. Juan says:

    1 is good enough….especially if it is MLS Cup

  17. Bobby T says:

    NY still in the running for a good playoff seed.

    Kaka probably replaces him next season anyway.

  18. Luc says:

    Another poor move by Philly by trading for an injured Soumare. The player that they needed, Okugo, was already in the squad.

  19. dan says:

    agreed, Ives analysis is poor. Arena will bench Maggee as he has already done in past

  20. dan says:

    every single player does this in MLS, so why is Beckham singled out?

    I can name a list of 100 players that complain as much as Becks, and I can’t blame them because the officiating is terrible in this league.

  21. Wynn says:

    and who said an American club could not build depth with 3 DP’s???

    LA is the benchmark right now…

  22. PD says:

    Okugo is a great CB but he is in many ways a less experienced Valdes. Plus, he is not tall. They need at least two players +6 ft. As of now I think they have 1 player who fits that bill.