Rapids’ Pablo Mastroeni takes next step in return

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Great news across the board on this one. Heck, even the fans at rival Real Salt Lake are probably happy to see this.

The Rapids midfielder and former U.S. international is jogging, taking the next little baby steps in his hopeful return from concussion related symptoms.

“We had sat down and talked about (staying out) six weeks to make sure everything was kind of healed up and to not be chasing this all year long, taking two weeks off here, two weeks there,” Mastroeni told ColoradoRapids.com after his workout. “I’m starting protocol. Today I started with three 10 minute jogs, and so far, so good. No reaction to it.”

As I wrote back on April 2, no one could be too surprised if the early 2012 injury and subsequent issues forced Mastroeni to give up professional soccer a little earlier than he might prefer. From that piece:

He’s been at this thing professionally since 1998. This is his 15th season in Major League Soccer, having started with that talented 1998 Miami Fusion side.  No matter what else happens, he’s had a fabulous domestic soccer career. The Argentine-born midfielder was a surprise choice on Bruce Arena’s 2002 U.S. World Cup side, but hardly a surprise when chosen to represent his country once again at Germany 2006.

Given what he’s already (rightly) said about health and family, given his age, and given how we’ve already seen others – Taylor Twellman and Alecko Eskandarian most notably – forced into retirement due to concussion issues, there’s a looming possibility here that Mastroeni may lean to caution and not return.

So, good for Mastroeni. We’ll keep you posted.