Lodeiro hadn't been seen on the practice field at Starfire Sports Complex since the Sounders arrived home from camp in Long Beach, California earlier this week, raising some alarm bells as to why he wasn't with the club. After Seattle's training session at Starfire on Tuesday, head coach Brian Schmetzer explained why, telling reporters that Lodeiro had gone home to his native Uruguay to undergo treatment for tendinitis.
Schmetzer downplayed the seriousness of the issue, saying that it actually dates back to last season and the treatment is precautionary to try and ensure Lodeiro is as close to 100 percent as possible for the start of the season. The Sounders' coach added that the star midfielder is expected to rejoin the club when they move camp to Mexico City next week.
"It's just been a lingering issue," Schmetzer said. "He had that towards the end of last year. And we, as always, try and pull out all the stops as far as getting people prepared for the season. Nico wants to make sure he's 100 percent for the start of the season."
There might not be a player in MLS more pivotal to his team's success than Lodeiro, so Sounders fans will certainly be on pins and needles awaiting his return to training. The 30-year-old Designated Player is coming off another dynamic season that saw him rack up seven goals and dish out 12 assists in 28 games while helping lead Seattle to its second MLS Cup title in four years.
Seattle start Concacaf Champions League play against Honduran side Club Olimpia on Feb. 20