(by Nick Thomas mlsnet.com 7-15-11)
Brian Mullan won’t be making the trip to Seattle for Saturday’s nationally televised game between the Sounders and the Colorado Rapids (4 pm ET, Fox Soccer) after all.
Rapids head coach Gary Smith, who had intimated Thursday he fully intended to take the wide midfielder, told MLSsoccer.com on Friday that the veteran would be left behind for a variety of reasons.
"It's based on two home games coming up, soreness in his body and the fact we are at full health," Smith said. “It’s totally my choice. Brian was adamant he wanted to go.”
The inclusion of Mullan, who has been struggling with a back injury since his return June 26, would have marked his first match in Seattle since his tackle led to Sounders midfielder Steve Zakuani breaking his leg back on April 22. The 33-year-old midfielder was subsequently suspended for a total of 10 matches.
Comment by The Cup
Good call by the Colorado manager. I think it best Mullan never play in Seattle again for the rest of his career, for his own safety.
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I've been a fan of Real Salt Lake since it joined MLS and took to the field in 2005, and I've been a fan of MLS since it began in 1996. Lately however I've started to worry about the path MLS is taking and the poor decisions they are making that in my mind threaten the growth of soccer as a whole in the US. (see "Columbus conspiracy" section) Soccer in America will grow only when we have a vibrant and diverse minor league system, something that MLS seems to be smothering at the moment. (see "American soccer wars" section) Let's keep our eyes on the situation and hope for the best, a future where grass-roots soccer and the minor leagues can not only exist but flourish, as well as where the contributions and history of the league's early clubs are appreciated and preserved.