Chris Roner (left) provided a memorable moment against the Galaxy in the 2003 playoffs.
Stephen Dunn/

Ronér sets soccer aside for '05

three months without bearing weight on the ankle, six months before resuming any athletic activity and perhaps a year before completing a full recovery -- the Quakes decided to set their sights on 2005 for Ronér's return.

Ronér did return for preseason this winter to become, according to the club, the first professional athlete to attempt a comeback following an allograft surgery. He even scored the Quakes' first goal of the preseason on Feb. 14 against the U.S. under-20 national team. However, it became clear that the ankle had not fully recovered and would not allow Ronér to play this season.

"It is unfortunate that a young, promising player like Chris has suffered an injury like this at this stage of his career," Earthquakes head coach Dominic Kinnear said. "We missed Chris's presence in the locker room and on the field in 2004, and I know we will again this year. I only hope that one day he can return to playing professional soccer, but what we really care about is Chris being able to lead a healthy life."

Because the Earthquakes have not exercised their option on Ronér for the 2005 season, he will not count against their roster and will not have to be put on the season-ending injury list again. The Quakes will, however, retain Ronér's MLS rights.

Jason Halpin is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.

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