The San Jose Earthquakes’ Matías Pérez García era is officially on hold.
Pérez García suffered a right knee injury during his second appearance with the Quakes, a 5-0 loss to FC Dallas on Saturday, and he is expected to undergo arthroscopic surgery today to fix meniscus damage, a team spokesman said from Seattle, where San Jose will face the Sounders Wednesday evening.
The team later announced the successful completion of a surgery to repair a torn meniscus for Pérez García.
The 29-year-old Argentine midfielder is expected to need 4-6 weeks’ worth of rehabilitation, which means he will likely miss most of the Quakes’ remaining 13 matches.
Pérez García, who scored in his MLS debut against LA Galaxy on Aug. 8, was injured in the first half against Dallas, and the injury was exacerbated when he was taken down in the box by Victor Ulloa during first-half stoppage time, drawing a penalty that Chris Wondolowski failed to convert.
Still, Pérez García played the entire match, and the problem’s severity was not evident until Monday, when he showed up for the team’s regeneration session with a swollen knee. An MRI then revealed the meniscus damage, which was not present on Pérez García’s scan prior to signing with the Quakes from first-division Argentine side Tigre.
The injury might force San Jose coach Mark Watson’s hand with regards to rookie Tommy Thompson. Thompson impressed on the ball during 18 minutes of action against FC Dallas – his first significant appearance in MLS play – but is regarded by Watson as a work in progress defensively.
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However, Watson is running out of other options to use in partnership with Wondolowski: Target forward Steven Lenhart is still recovering from his own arthroscopic knee procedure earlier this month, and Portuguese attacker Yannick Djalo did not travel to Seattle due to a strained right quadriceps.
If not Thompson or a tactical shift, Watson could also use Adam Jahn, Billy Schuler or Khari Stephenson in conjunction with Wondolowski, who has played at the tip of the spear in the Quakes’ last four matches.