AT&T MLS All Star Game - Chelsea v MLS All Stars

Which MLS team will be crunched most by international departures in Round 28?


Difficult as it is, let’s try to skip the part where we wonder about Major League Soccer’s ongoing, stubborn insistence of playing through this week’s FIFA international break.

In fairness MLS has made some progress here, attempting to shrink the slate of league contests around World Cup qualifiers and other international dates – but this “progress” is arriving at a plodding pace.

But, again, let’s just power through that for now. Rather, let’s talk about which teams will be taxed the most star power.

The Galaxy, on such a roll lately, top this unfortunate list. They will miss fabulously in-form Landon Donovan (pictured), league MVP candidate Robbie Keane and goalkeeper Jaime Penedo for this week’s visit by Colorado.

That’s going to hurt, especially as L.A. has ground to recover in the Supporters Shield chase. Keane and Donovan will take so much of the offense with them, while the goalkeeping gloves will be handed back to Carlo Cudicini, who just can’t help the team with the big save the way Penedo can. (We all remember the work of wonder from just a couple weeks back, right? Video of that one is at the bottom of this post.)

FC Dallas, desperate for points to help arrest that long summer slide and still in pitched battle with about five teams for three playoff spots, will also miss its starting goalkeeper and leading scorer. In fact, Dallas’ date at home against Vancouver could be called a “playoff six-pointer.”

And then there is Sporting Kansas City, where Kei Kamara just flew the KC coop for a second England adventure. Peter Vermes’ team will also be without center back Matt Besler and midfielder Graham Zusi, both called into Jurgen Klinsmann’s 23-man camp for the pair of important upcoming qualifiers.

Kansas City hosts Columbus, which will be in “fresh start” mode under interim boss Brian Bliss – but without its top man, suspended playmaker Federico Higuain.


Sergio Aguero expects to miss a month with hamstring injury

Sergio Aguero
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After scoring five goals against Newcastle United, Sergio Aguero may have to wait a bit of time to get back to scoring in the Premier League.

The Manchester City striker lasted just 25 minutes in Argentina’s World Cup qualifier on Thursday, as he was stretchered off with a hamstring injury. 

Aguero underwent testing in Argentina, and told the local media “I think I’m going to be out for a month.”

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Manchester City and Argentina teammate Nicolas Otamendi said Aguero was in tears in the dressing room, and some reports have penned the injury as a torn hamstring.

If Aguero were to be ruled out for a month, he would miss City’s Champions League clash vs. Sevilla, as well as the massive Manchester derby away at United on October 25.

To make matters worse for City supporters, David Silva was forced off after just ten minutes while playing for Spain today. Silva took a harsh challenge from behind, and hobbled off with what looked to be an ankle injury. If Silva’s injury ends up being more than just a knock, City could be without their two most important players in the attack.

Bayern Munich’s Mario Gotze out 10-12 weeks with groin injury

SHANGHAI, CHINA - JULY 21:  Mario Goetze of FC Bayern Muenchen in action during the international friendly match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Inter Milan of the Audi Football Summit 2015 at Shanghai Stadium on July 21, 2015 in Shanghai, China.  (Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images)
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Mario Gotze could be out of action until 2016 after picking up a groin injury on international duty.

The Bayern Munich midfielder suffered a tendon tear in his abductor muscle while stretching for a ball in Germany’s 1-0 loss to Ireland in EURO qualifiers on Thursday. He was taken off in the 35th minute.

Ruled out for 10-12 weeks, Gotze is likely to miss the rest of the first half of the season for Bayern. Their last league match of 2015 is on December 19, which is 11 weeks away. The Bundesliga then goes on winter break, with Bayern’s next match not until January 23.

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Gotze will miss both of Bayern’s upcoming Champions League matches against Arsenal, which is good news for the Gunners as they are in desperate need of a result.

However, Arjen Robben is back in training and will make his return to action within the coming weeks. After starting the Bundesliga seasons with eight wins out of eight, Robben’s return would add just another weapon to Pep Guardiola’s dominant attack.

Robben has not played since being injured in early September while playing for the Netherlands, and could feature for Bayern against Werder Bremen next week.