TUKWILA, Wash. – As the Seattle Sounders hit the stretch run of their 2017 season, they’ll most likely have to make do without Jordan Morris for at least some of it. Exactly how long, however, has yet to be determined.
The 22-year-old forward pulled up with a non-contact leg injury in the 61st minute of Seattle’s 1-1 draw against the LA Galaxy on Sunday and Seattle head coach Brian Schmetzer confirmed after the match that Morris had strained his hamstring.
That development was followed by a report on Monday from Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl, saying the Sounders fear the injury could be serious enough to keep Morris out for the duration of the MLS season, which would include the US national team’s upcoming October World Cup qualifiers.
Schmetzer told reporters at Seattle’s practice at Starfire Sports Complex on Monday that the Sounders should have a better idea of the severity of the injury and a recovery timeline after Morris undergoes an MRI scheduled for that afternoon.
“He’s being assessed,” Schmetzer said. “He’ll have an MRI and we’ll have more information once we know the true extent of the injury. The doctors will take a look at him and we’ll see from there.
“He’s sore. He’s inside [Seattle’s practice facility] there getting treatment, he’ll get very good treatment here and at home. He’s a tough kid; he’ll be fine and bounce back. The question is just how bad it is and what the timeline is. But we’ll do everything humanly possible to get him back as soon as we can.”
Morris was in the midst of a down year statistically at the club level for the defending MLS Cup champions, with just three goals in league play after a 2016 MLS Rookie of the Year award-winning campaign that saw him find the net 12 times. Even so, he’s a valuable week-to-week cog in the Sounders’ attack, with his dynamic speed and athleticism an asset in stretching the field and keeping opposing defenders on their heels.
Losing Morris at a juncture of the season where the Sounders are jostling for Western Conference playoff positioning certainly isn’t ideal, but given the quality depth of his attack this season, Schmetzer says he feels as though his team is capable of withstanding the loss.
Newly acquired Spanish winger Victor Rodriguez has fared well in his time on the field since making his club debut on Aug. 23. Striker Will Bruin, meanwhile, has been productive in the No. 9 role this season for Seattle with his eight goals good for second on the team.
“We won a bunch of games when the national team guys were on duty [earlier this season]. We’re certainly going to miss Jordan,” Schmetzer said. “But we’ll be okay. I mean nothing good ever comes easy, right? We faced some challenges earlier in the year. We’ll have to do it again.”