Sporting Kansas City center back Ike Opara diagnosed with ruptured Achilles tendon

A sterling start to the season has come to an abrupt halt for Ike Opara.

Sporting Kansas City announced on Monday afternoon that Opara has been diagnosed with a ruptured Achilles tendon in his left ankle. They did not announce a possible timetable for a recovery, but additional details will be made available after the athletic center back undergoes further medical evaluations.

The 26-year-old Opara, whose career to date has been hindered by injuries, suffered the ruptured Achilles in the 81st minute of Saturday's scoreless draw with Real Salt Lake. Opara jumped up for an aerial ball, and landed awkwardly before having to be subbed off on a stretcher.

Recently recovered from a season-ending ankle injury suffered in 2014, Opara had gotten off to an incredible start this year. He led Sporting KC and all MLS defenders with two goals scored through the first six weeks of the season, and had helped his club post three shutouts. He also led MLS in interceptions (30) and aerials won (33) while coming in second in duels won (55).

With Opara out for the time being, Sporting KC will likely turn to one of Jalil Anibaba, Erik Palmer-Brown or Kevin Ellis to serve as Matt Besler's center back partner.

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