The Red Bulls took a loss down in Philadelphia but took a bigger loss for the club. Central defender of the club and for the US Men’s National Team, Aaron Long who had successful surgery on his ruptured Achilles Tendon on Monday, May 17thth will be out for the remainder of the 2021 Season. A big blow to the plans of Gerhard Struber and the amount of International matches the US Men’s National Team are going to have this summer and into the winter to qualify for the World Cup.
In second-half stoppage time in the loss to the Philadelphia Union, Long was challenging a ball that was in the air, when he came down to land, he buckled and went to the ground quickly. The replay showed Long being picked up by two of his teammates and helping him to the far side touchline where he stayed waiting for help from the training staff before the final whistle blew.
In 2016 Aaron Long was signed to play for Red Bulls 2 in USL Championship after being drafted by the Portland Timbers in 2014, then singed to the Seattle Sounders and playing for their two team in 2015. Since joining the Red bulls Long has played in 125 matches, scoring nine goals in all competitions. Long has been a solid center-back, using his gifts to make fantastic stops and when he’s able to, add a goal whenever he can.
If this season wasn’t going to be challenging enough for the Red Bulls, they will now have to go along without their top center back, but they also have to worry about possibly missing Amro Tarek, who was also injured in the first half at the Union, when he was subbed out for Tom Edwards because Tarek is also a center-back playing as a right fullback in that game. Struber has to hope the injury isn’t too bad and if they have to, they might have to bring up someone from the USL Bulls to fill in.
But until then, the Red Bulls are going to have to move forward without Aaron Long for the remainder of the season, I wish Long a speedy recovery and he can get back to the pitch healthy and ready to go in 2022.