By DAN KARELL
Hertha Berlin and U.S. Men’s National Team centerback John Brooks looks like he’ll have to wait another week before he can return to the field.
Speaking to the assembled media at a press conference ahead of Hertha’s match on Saturday vs. Borussia Mönchengladbach, head coach Jos Luhukay confirmed that Brooks wouldn’t be available for selection this weekend, despite returning to light training last week and full training this week from a painful looking elbow injury.
“For (Brooks) the game on Saturday comes too early,” Luhukay said, as quoted by Berliner Zeitung.
Brooks suffered the elbow injury on September 22 in a match against Freiburg, forcing the 20-year-old off in the first half. The injury kept Brooks out of the most recent two U.S. Men’s National Team games as well as the last three weeks of Hertha matches. After Saturday, the next match Hertha plays is on October 26 at Bayern Munich.
Here are some more notes from Americans abroad:
AZ’S STEWART BACKS JOHANNSSON USMNT CHOICE
Aron Johannsson’s decision to play for the U.S. Men’s National Team was a controversial one in certain venues, especially back in Iceland, but the 22-year-old has received some important backing from a big figure at his club and a former USMNT member himself.
AZ Alkmaar Director of Football Ernie Stewart, who earned more than 100 caps for the U.S. between 1990 and 2004, applauded Johannsson for the way he went about his decision and that maybe surprisingly, it affects AZ in a positive way.
“Aron asked me what I learned about the (USSF), the USMNT and the long travel, it was very professional of him,” Stewart told AZ’s website. “The funny thing is that an international for the U.S. or a South American country often has a higher transfer value than a Scandinavian player.
“His chances of playing in a World Cup have become larger. This is both good for himself and for AZ. An AZ Alkmaar player in a World Cup is good publicity for the club.”
Johannsson scored his first USMNT goal on Tuesday, the game-winner in the 3-2 victory at Panama. The Mobile, Alabama born-forward has started off his club season with a bang, scoring ten goals in all competitions.
PACKWOOD MOVES ON ONE-MONTH LOAN TO BRISTOL ROVERS
After making a successful recovery from a serious leg injury, Will Packwood has been given a chance to earn first-team minutes, even if just for a short time.
Bristol Rovers announced on Thursday that they have acquired the 20-year-old American defender on a one-month emergency loan from Birmingham City. The U.S. youth international is eligible to represent his new club this Saturday against Wycombe Wanderers.
Packwood since his return from injury has yet to feature for the Birmingham City first team, though he’s featured for the reserves on four occasions.
HANNOVER TO OFFER CHERUNDOLO JOB AFTER RETIREMENT
Hannover seemingly has no plans for their captain to leave town even when his career is over.
According to a report in German publication BILD, Hannover 96 will offer Steve Cherundolo a job in the front office to keep him at the club when his playing career ends. The Rockford, Illinois native has played for Hannover since 1999 and has played 300 times for the club in the Bundesliga.
The 34-year-old right back recently returned to full training after a third knee surgery in this calendar year, and scored a goal in a friendly match last week. Cherundolo, who is aiming to play in his fourth World Cup next summer with the U.S. Men’s National Team. Cherundolo will also be a free agent at the end of this season.
What do you think of these notes? Do you see Brooks returning for the Bayern Munich game? Do you believe Johannsson is worth more as an American? Happy to see Packwood go out on loan to receive some first-team minutes?
Share your thoughts below.