U.S. Soccer announced on Saturday that Seattle Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei has suffered a sprained right ankle and will leave January camp in Los Angeles and head back to Seattle.
On Wednesday, United States national team head coach Bruce Arena said that Frei’s play has been “pretty damn impressive” and praised his consistency. That effort led Arena to call in Frei to the U.S.’ 32-man January camp roster ahead of two international friendlies. The first is against Serbia on Jan. 29 (1 p.m. PT; ESPN2, Univision) at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, Calif., and the second is against Jamaica on Feb. 3 (4 p.m. PT; FS1, UniMas) in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Frei was one of four Sounders in camp, joining Jordan Morris, Chad Marshall and Brad Evans. The Switzerland-born Frei is almost done with gaining his United States citizenship, a process he said is in its final steps. He has no international experience with either country.
The U.S. also sent home D.C. United goalkeeper Bill Hamid on Tuesday because of a knee issue. The LA Galaxy's Brian Rowe will now join Real Salt Lake’s Nick Rimando, the San Jose Earthquakes’ David Bingham and the New York Red Bulls’ Luis Robles in the camp.
The Sounders’ first preseason match is on Feb. 4 against the Portland Timbers in Tucson, Ariz., before heading to Charleston, S.C., to compete against the USL’s Charleston Battery, Atlanta United and Columbus Crew SC in the Carolina Challenge Cup.
Seattle’s MLS regular-season opener is on March 4 against the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium.