angel city fc defended forward christening press as an experienced and versatile player when the team first signed her in 2021. Now, a year after tearing her right ACL, Press’s return to the pitch has been postponed for a fourth surgery.
Press announced on Sunday on social networks she will undergo knee surgery again. Her announcement comes days before the US women’s national team kicks off. World Cup game in New Zealand against Vietnam.
Until the US World Cup roster was announced last month, Press said that “there wasn’t a day in the last year that I didn’t think I could be there. Even after three surgeries.”
This is the most transparent press, 34, about his injury, although he did not indicate when he would undergo his last surgery.
“This time, I want to share how I’m doing from below,” he said.
Press signed a three-year contract she was reportedly worth $700,000 with the newly formed Angel City in 2021. This deal made her the highest-paid player in the league at the time. But eight games into Angel City’s debut season, Press tore her ACL during the team’s 3-2 win over Racing Louisville in June 2022. During the first eight months since the initial injury, she underwent to three surgeries.
“Some call these setbacks,” Press said in his post. “But I don’t like that language because it implies that there is another way that I ought have been in And those are expectations that I do not accept.
Press was looking forward to representing her hometown of Los Angeles after an international career that includes two World Cup titles. She brought experience as well as her 64 career goals in 155 caps that ranked ninth in US soccer history.
Press’s recovery timeline is unclear. A first-time ACL reconstruction surgery, without co-injury, has a standard healing period of eight to 12 months, according to Dr. Alan Beyer, executive medical director and orthopedic surgeon at the Hoag Orthopedic Institute. “Especially in a sport like soccer with a lot of cutting and a lot of twisting,” Beyer said.
Complications such as meniscus tears and cartilage damage may require further operations. While it is unknown if Press has any co-injuries, these second, third and now fourth surgeries have the potential to prevent her from moving for the rest of her career.
“The more surgeries a joint has, the more prone it is to both scar tissue and arthritis,” Beyer said. “So it’s not good that you have to have four knee surgeries to fix the problem instead of one.”
Having the muscle tone, balance and strength of a world-class athlete is something Press has on his side, Beyer said. It’s the passion elite athletes have for their sport that can complicate their recovery.
“Sometimes they are unrealistic,” Beyer said. “We have come a long way in ACL reconstruction in the last 40 years that I have been in practice. But we are not miracle workers. And you can’t always make everyone as good as they were before the injury.
“And unfortunately, we’ve gotten so good that people sometimes think, ‘Oh, well, this is not a piece of cake, I’m going to be fine.’ And not everyone turns out well.
Angel City, still a fledgling team, also has young talent in the form of an 18-year-old striker. alyssa thompson. She is one of only six teenagers in the league.
With no Press on the field this season, Angel City (4-6-5) sits 10th in the NWSL standings. They have four active forwards, including Thompson, Simone Charley, Katie Johnson and Sydney Leroux.
Angel City came within four points of making the playoffs in their debut season, landing an eighth-place finish in 2022.
While Press shared that she “isn’t looking forward to getting back on the field,” that her “identity isn’t lost by not playing,” and that “most days [she doesn’t] I even miss it,” he made it clear that he is not done with soccer.
“And even though, on paper, this is an athlete’s recovery nightmare, I feel in my heart that climbing the mountain, yes, even one more time, is the dream.”