Stuart Holden's career is on hold again as he faces another 6-9 months on the sidelines after undergoing surgery to repair ligaments in his right knee. And at this point, after so many knee injuries, it's tough to imagine him ever seeing the field for a meaningful club over any stretch of time again.
Holden first hurt his right knee in July of 2013 playing for the United States in the Gold Cup after missing the previous two years with a left knee injury, hoping that would allow him to get back up to speed ahead of the Bolton Championship season, but he tore his ACL in the final, which required surgery. That injury sidelined him until March 3, when he played in a Bolton U-21 match, but his return was short-lived. He broke down after just 22 minutes and was subbed off with the torn knee ligaments that forced him to undergo his latest operation.
The right knee injury followed the aforementioned left knee injury, which occurred in March 2011 when Jonny Evans caught him with a terrible tackle. That put him out for six months, but then he had a setback that required another operation and that put him on the sideline for 16 months, when he finally returned for the Gold Cup, which did in his right knee. And that doesn't even take into account his 2010 broken leg from a Nigel de Jong tackle, although he was able to return from that one in time for the World Cup.
With so many injuries, and Holden no longer a young player at age 28, he might be just about done as a professional player. Bolton said that they will offer him a contract extension and keep him in the team even after the latest injury, but there is little reason to believe that the midfielder will ever be fit again after three years and counting since his last extended stretch of health.
It's sad to see any player's career derailed by injuries, but that's especially true with Holden. He was maintained an optimistic outlook despite his litany of setbacks and has been praised by managers and trainers as one of the hardest workers there is. His inability to get fit can't be attributed to him or anything he has control over, but instead terrible, terrible luck.
The good news is that regardless of his future as a soccer player, his personal life seems to be going swimmingly.
Congrats to Stu and Karalyn and best wishes in your recovery. We hope to see you back on a pitch someday, but you seem to be doing just fine without soccer.
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