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Daniela: Ligaments, Tibia Damage

Here's the official word on Daniela, the WPS St. Louis star from Brazil who was injured Sunday against the Washington Freedom at Maryland SoccerPlex:

Two damaged knee ligaments and a crack in the tibia, likely sidelining her for the rest of the season.

"Daniela will be out indefinitely," Athletica team physician Robert Brophy said. "She does have a significant knee injury. Daniela has significant pain and swelling. She faces a lengthy recovery and extensive treatment before she returns to play."

By Steve Goff  |  May 5, 2009; 11:32 AM ET
Categories:  Freedom , Women  
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What terrible news. Hope she recovers as quickly as possible. Also a huge loss for the WPS -- always a pity when you lose exciting players with star power.

Posted by: mecon121 | May 5, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Has anyone given Wambach the nickname "Hristo" yet?

Posted by: tab5g1 | May 5, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Definitely a big loss for the league. She's one of the more exciting players in WPS. And STL, how are they gonna handle this now? Still no wins, and now they lose their star player. Hope Solo must be hopping mad right now.

Posted by: KG118 | May 5, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

What a shame. I hope she recovers quickly.

Posted by: WorldCup | May 5, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

And STL, how are they gonna handle this now?

Kerri Hanks is going to step in and step up.

Posted by: OWNTF | May 5, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

This is sad news for Daniela, St. Louis Athletica and the league.

When the injury took place it looked really bad (when FSC showed the camera angles).

She looked to be in immense pain.

I was telling my wife and daughter that she looked like she was finished for this season.

She is a an exciting and talented player. Her second goal strike was nothing less than "class".

Posted by: yankiboy | May 5, 2009 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Thanks again Steve for the follow up. Agreed - terrible news for the WPS - we are fortunate to have such a talented player join us here in the states. We wish her a swift recovery. Any idea if she will re-hab here in the US or will she head back home to Brazil?

Posted by: brfan67 | May 5, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I can't tell if she was more Stoitchkov'd or Kovalenko'd on the tackle.

Posted by: IamAM | May 5, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Athletica should ask the league to suspend Wambach for at least the next game. Of course Abby could probably appeal, but still, the league needs to set a precedent here. WPS success depends on its star players remaining healthy for the whole season. Imagine if it had been Marta or Wambach herself? WPS can't afford to lose its talent to dangerous plays.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Abby was already punished with a yellow- it was a dangerous play, but not malicious. I don't think it warrants a suspension. She didn't mean to cause injury- there might not have been an injury at all- most of the problem was that Daniela's leg was planted so awkwardly when Abby hit it. Worse fouls have caused no injury whatsoever, and small fouls and non-contact situations have ended careers. Just because someone was injured doesn't mean the league should suspend the player that did it. No one would be calling for Abby's suspension if Daniela hadn't gotten hurt. The injury does not change the nature of the foul.

Still, I wish her the best.

Posted by: revsfanindc | May 5, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Steve - Do you know what kind of economic hardship Daniela might be facing as a result? I don't know what WPS was paying, but I'm guessing her contract was not guaranteed. (Is that right?) Can she expect that the league will full cover the cost of her treatment and recovery? I certainly wish her the best.

Posted by: JefComment | May 5, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Brokenbil - if you ask me, the league needs to suspend the ref for that game, who permitted players to knock Abby Wambach around in several flagrant fouls that were yellow-card worthy in the first half. He let the game get out of control and dangerous, especially with the rainy conditions.

Posted by: Sally | May 5, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Also, protecting top players? That's a stupid policy. A foul is a foul is a foul, no matter who its committed on. No preferential treatment. What, should the MLS suspend every player that touches Beckham because they don't want him to be hurt? (Oh wait, they already do that...)

Posted by: revsfanindc | May 5, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

I've seen Marta (and Daniela) numerous times in internationals, Wambach and Bompastor on a regular basis, not to mention Mia Hamm, Bridgit Prinz, and all the other legends (it's great that the DC area has hosted the best of the best so often through the years).

If you take all the best qualities of all those amazing performances, that's exactly what Daniela brought to G-town last Saturday. She's fast, she's strong, she's highly skilled, she's tireless, and she's tough. In terms of WPS product, to lose Wambach or Marta for the season could not be any worse.

But she'll be back, and meanwhile the show will go on in StL and around the league. Some discipline might be on the way for Wambach and the match ref, who let way too much violence go unchecked in that match. But who knows how WPS will ultimately respond - they are learning this stuff on the fly.

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | May 5, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

You guys have got to remember that WPS is a business, first and foremost. Just like the WUSA before it, the league depends on its star players for success. If you let your stars get seriously injured on the field and just let it go without punishment, more injuries are bound to follow. WPS wants to be around next year, but it won't get there without its stars.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

OMG that's will women's soccer survive?

Posted by: lylewimbledon | May 5, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Lyle you're a butthead, what happened did World of Warcraft crash on you today? If you're not interested in womens' soccer, why bother to go into a thread that's nothing but, and post your lame misspelled sarcastic bullsh*t?

Posted by: OWNTF | May 5, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Joke about it if you want, but WPS without its stars is no better than the W-League or WPSL. WPS has made a significant investment to bring the best international and USWNT players to league play. I'd think the league would want to protect it.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse



I'll betcha someone will say that the coaching staff asked Abby to send someone to the hospital.

Posted by: bs2004 | May 5, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

I doubt it. I think Hope Solo was right -- Abby let her emotions get the better of her when she flew in with two feet extended. It's too bad, but given the severity of the injury, I think Abby deserves to sit out one game.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Anybody remember who the U.S. was playing when Abby had her leg broken last year?

Posted by: jamullan | May 5, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I think the WPS needs to remember that decisions on Ms. Wambach need to be based on the tackle and not the extent of Daniela's injury.

Posted by: KG118 | May 5, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

I think Athletica have a case. Abby's tackle took out a player who scored two goals in a close game. Plus, the tackle was caught on tape. It's going to be hard to argue in review that Abby was simply going for the ball. Then again, it wouldn't surprise me if Abby gets away with the yellow card. The league loses two players for a week if Abby sits out a game.

I'm curious to see how the refs handle future infractions.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

OT, from WPS website:

Visa approved! Erin McLeod’s visa has been approved in Canada and she should have it in hand and arrive in Washington, D.C. sometime this week. Her arrival cannot come soon enough for a team allowing 2.4 goals per match and struggling badly at the goalkeeper position. “I’m not happy with some of our decisions defensively,” coach Jim Gabarra said.

Posted by: OWNTF | May 5, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

As has been said, the tackle was caught on tape. The tape should give a pretty fair indication of whether or not Abby was simply going for the ball. It shows what it shows, no need to argue either way.

FWIW, from my viewing of the video linked by Goff, it appeared to me that Abby went forward aggressively at the kickoff, Daniela touched the ball a bit strong, Abby saw a chance for a takeaway and went in to get the ball.

If the tape is unclear (hopefully the league has more & better than what we can access) and it comes down to trying to determine intent, I think the game situation - Freedom had just scored to come within 1, needs to press with limited time for an equalizer - argues against Abby being motivated by payback. What she needed was possession, not to hurt someone.

Posted by: JefComment | May 5, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Having seen Wambach get cleared out with full blind side body checks earlier in the game that weren't carded, any suspension or sudden "horrors" at rough play by WPS would be the height of hypocrisy. The ref was a joke, he didn't protect the players or the integrity of the game. Actually WPS is lucky Wambach didn't get concussed earlier on some of those hits (yeah, you, Hope Solo, with the elbow to the head.) A yellow was issued, that's the end. The ref, on the other hand, should be dropped from the WPS rotation until he (a) demonstrates an actual, practical understanding of the Laws of the Game; and (b) loses about 25 pounds.

I feel sorry for Daniela, but that is a risk you assume when you take the field. Time for everyone to move on.

Posted by: griffin1108 | May 5, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse

I hardly think any post-game disciplinary decision by WPS would be the height of hypocrisy. The referee may have been in charge on the pitch, but he does not represent league management. Like I said numerous times before, WPS has investments to protect. Issuing a one-game suspension to Abby Wambach for a dangerous play that sidelined a star player indefinitely would not be a poor choice.

Posted by: Brokenbil | May 5, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Cummon you guys, it was a big time dirty tackle, both feet up, all the way through. She should sit for at least a week, maybe more, the league should interview her. If it was payback for her broken leg against Brazil, should get a severe penalty. Of course the Ref was not up to the job, but given the way Wambach throws her weight around, she's got little complaint about some hard shoulder tackles. And she put a hit on Solo in the air in the first half that should have been carded.

Posted by: SantaCruzRed | May 6, 2009 2:30 AM | Report abuse

@SantaCruzRed - payback..really?? It was a hard tackle, she deserved the yellow and might get suspended, but I seriously doubt it was a revenge tackle...Daniela was not the first Brazilian she has played against since she returned from her injury and didn't give any of them hard tackles.

Posted by: soccerfan80 | May 6, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

They review it and decided to suspend Wambach for that dirty tackle. So, that ends the discussion on wether the tacle was dirty or not. No one - in their right mind- will suspend a player for racklessness. They've see the other tapes from different angles - that are not out on Youtube - and they have spoken. The question is: Is a one game suspension too blunt of a sentence ? I think so. Wambach ruined her fellow coleague's career for at least one year, and all she will get is to miss one game ? Absurd !

Posted by: Wiseman5 | May 8, 2009 8:16 AM | Report abuse

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