Josh Gatt needs another ACL surgery and will likely miss the remainder of 2014, according to MLS Soccer. The 22-year-old first hurt his knee last June and had an operation to repair the torn ACL, but he re-injured the knee again in March and now needs to go under the knife again.
Luckily, this injury doesn't sound as bad as the previous one.
"It is a clean ACL injury this time, no other injuries," Molde medical chief Lars Håvard Sæbø told MLSsoccer.com. "I think despite having had this a second time, when it comes to performance, I think he can be as sharp as he was before. This is something we have discussed with him."
There is a chance that Gatt could return by the end of the Tippeligaen in November, but Sæbø told MLS that the focus is on making sure he's 100% fit in February for the start of the 2015 preseason. If he plays at the start of the next season in March, it will make it a 21 month absence.
Before his first knee injury, Gatt looked like one of United States' best young players. He was called up to the senior team days after his 21st birthday and made an impact in his first cap against Russia, using his blistering pace to give the U.S. a spark off the bench. That speed also made him a key player at Molde, where he twice won the league and was establishing himself as one of the Tippeligaen's best wingers.
Now, Gatt's career is back on hold. Sæbø told MLS Soccer that Gatt has had a great attitude and work ethic since getting hurt, which he's going to need again after his second operation. At 22 years old, there is still plenty of time for Gatt to get his career back on track and onto the U.S. team, but that starts with getting back on the field.