CARSON, Calif. – Todd Dunivant was back on the LA Galaxy's game-day roster for the first time since he was hurt in early April, but he wasn't going to see any time in Saturday afternoon's 3-1 victory over the Portland Timbers.
The veteran left back, who tore abdominal muscles in an April 6 win over Chivas USA, is probably a good two weeks, maybe more, from actually playing for LA's first team, and he's hoping he can get some time this weekend for the Galaxy's reserve side.
Dunivant, 33, was a surprise choice for the Galaxy's bench, and it was more about getting him into the flow again – creating a game-day rhythm for him – than anything else.
"He's coming back ...," head coach Bruce Arena said following the game at StubHub Center. "We've got to start to get him moving again, maybe even get him a game with Galaxy II in the next couple of weeks."
Dunivant, who has been training fully for about a week, would love to get a few minutes when Galaxy II, the club's USL PRO-based second team, take on Arizona United on Saturday night at StubHub's Track and Field Stadium.
"Los Dos" (11-7-4), who are fourth among 14 clubs in the USL PRO standings, are on the road the following weekend, at Oklahoma City FC, then return home for games on Aug. 24 and 27.
"I think in an ideal world, I'd love to get some time with the Galaxy II and get a game there and then build my way in," Dunivant told MLSsoccer.com. "I've had about a week of training now now, and I'm just going to build on it. Obviously, I've been out for awhile, and my fitness – I'm good at running around the field, but soccer fitness is something else."
Dunivant said Arena and Galaxy II coach Curt Onalfo would assess his progress later this week to determine whether he can play against Arizona United, "but I'd love to get going next week."
Being part of the group Saturday was a thrill for Dunivant, even if he wasn't going to see the field. He said it "feels like home again."
"It's a good thing I didn't have to get out there, put it that way," he said. "It was good to get back in the flow, get around the guys. ... It's great [to be training fully], because I'm mixing in with the guys rather than running on the sideline, and you're in with the team, and that's such a difference.
"It's been torture being on the sidelines and being out of training, so I'm excited for every drill, everything we do. It's kind of whole new experience again."
Once fully fit, Dunivant hopes to make Arena's decision on who plays left back a tough one. Robbie Rogers has started there in eight of the last 10 competitive games, and he's been most impressive.
"He's done well, and that's great," Dunivant said. "That's what you want to see. No complaints from me."