The Bundesliga has just resumed training ahead of a targeted May 9th restart of the league, but already we have the bad side of what can happen for players who have a long layoff. Fortuna Düsseldorf announced that United States goalkeeper Zack Steffen, who was on loan to them from Manchester City, re-injured his knee in the first day of training with the club. They don’t expect for him to be ready when the league resumes in a couple weeks.
A day after returning to team training, Zack Steffen re-injured his knee. Severity is unknown, but pretty safe to say he wouldn't be ready for a Bundesliga return next month. May have played his last match for Düsseldorf -- next season likely another loan or as Ederson's backup. https://t.co/paHjaUEBqJ— ChuckMe92 Soccer (@ChuckMe92Soccer) April 27, 2020
Steffen had been the #1 goalkeeper for Düsseldorf for the first 17 matches of the season before suffering a knee injury in December. He had not returned to action by the time the coronavirus pandemic put a halt to the Bundesliga season. The hope was that the extended layoff would be a benefit to Steffen in his attempt to return to the field. However, that optimism has shifted to pessimism that he would be able to return by the end of the season, whenever the Bundesliga gets the full go-ahead to resume.
Steffen will not be missing any USMNT matches during this layoff, as the CONCACAF Nations League playoffs, set for June, were postponed. This would theoretically give him all summer to heal if he cannot return before the end of Düsseldorf’s season. The question will remain whether he will return to Manchester City, stay on loan or a permanent transfer with Fortuna Düsseldorf, or if City will send him elsewhere for playing time. The more important goal is to get him back to 100% and ready to play.