The news on Orlando City midfielder Harrison Heath's knee injury is out and it's not good, although it certainly could have been worse. I've never had my patella pop out of its socket before but it sounds like something that would kill me instantly. Luckily, "H" is tougher than me and survived, although he will reportedly miss six to eight weeks.
WFTV's Christian Bruey broke the news on Twitter this afternoon:
Paul Tenorio of the Orlando Sentinel confirmed Bruey's report a short time later.
The good news is that he avoids surgery.
These types of injuries often stretch the ligaments and tendons around the joint and time and rest are required to tighten them back up and allow the joint to regain its stability. A subluxation of the patella usually doesn't require surgery unless there are overt tears in the supporting structures.
It's a shame for Heath, who, at only 19 years old, has appeared in three MLS matches this season and had started two straight games overall for Orlando City. The 5-foot-11, 160-pound native of Newcastle-under-Lyme, England has started two league matches, playing 136 minutes. The defensive midfielder has one shot and has not scored.
Heath is the second Lions player to sustain a knee injury during a mid-season friendly match this season. Kevin Molino tore his ACL against Brazilian side Ponte Preta back on May 2 and was lost for the season.
While Heath was being helped to the locker room last night by the training staff, Orlando City supporters broke out in chants of "no more friendlies!" Although the run of luck this season for the Lions has been unfortunate, players have gone down in all competitions this season. Conor Donovan, who just returned last night, broke his elbow in U.S. Open Cup play at Charleston on June 17. Just last week, Sean St. Ledger dislocated his shoulder in an MLS game against FC Dallas.
It's been a busy year for the training staff. Hopefully, better and more healthy days are ahead.