American Exports: Timothy Chandler resumes ball work after knee injury as Nurnberg fight relegation

Timothy Chandler with Nurnberg

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AMSTERDAM – Recovering FC Nürnberg right back Timothy Chandler could return to full training with the club as early as next week, MLSsoccer.com has learned.

The 24-year-old, who suffered a torn meniscus in his left knee early in the team's Feb. 8 loss to Bayern Munich, resumed working out with a ball on the side of Tuesday's practice session.

"Only with the a few others, not with the whole team," FCN press officer Katharina Wildermuth told MLSsoccer.com. "Maybe next week he can return to team training."

Having already missed 10 games with the injury, Chandler has two important reasons for hoping to be back in action by the time Nürnberg close their Bundesliga season with a May 10 trip to Schalke.

For starters, the Frankfurt native will want to be up for the fight as his club tries to climb out of the drop zone. Nürnberg have lost eight of 11 since Chandler went on the shelf, putting them three points from a safety spot with four rounds to go.

Furthermore, the US international will hope to show boss Jurgen Klinsmann that he is fit to be named to the 30-man provisional World Cup roster, due May 12, and invited to the prep camp that begins two days later. A late fitness rally from Chandler could benefit the coach, who has seen his right back depth chart thinned by the retirement of Steve Cherundolo.

For the Bundesliga season, Chandler has one goal and two assists in 19 matches. He was experiencing a revival of form at the time of the knee injury, with consecutive Team of the Week nods heading into the Bayern game.