Twitter, and the soccer world, erupted today (15 January) as the news made its way across the pond that Stuart Holden, the U.S. international and Bolton Wanderers’ midfielder, stepped onto the pitch for the first team, for the first time, in nearly 16 months.
Used today as a substitute in the 76th minute of the FA cup match against Sunderland, Holden saw a formative 17 minutes on the field.
Holden, the very likeable Scottish-born USA star had been injured by a horrendous impact from Manchester United’s Jonny Evans, with a studs-up collision with Holden’s knee (Go to minute 5 to see the Evans tackle).
With rehabilitation finished (check out KickTV’s episodes chronicling his rehab: No Holden Back, Episode 1 found below), expect to see the tenacious Holden more and more as the weeks go on, being used as a sub or starting.
Just last week, the former Houston Dynamo made his return in Bolton’s match against Oldham Athletic in the Manchester Senior Cup. His touches, though still a bit tentative, and his mind for the game, with sublime passing and great off-the-ball movement, are needed as Bolton is currently 16th out of 24 teams in the Championship.
Despite the amazing news of Holden’s comeback from injury, Most U.S. Men’s National team supporters are anxious as all get up for Holden to get back to his in-form days of 2009. This goal against Haiti is just one classic shot of the STU.S.A. of yesteryear:
Regardless of his form (since he just came back from injury…TODAY), these are the types of messages that USMNT supporters and Bolton fans should encourage him with and to spur him on:
And lastly, here’s a lovely Instagram photo from Holden’s brother, footballer Euan Holden, of Stuart in the process of being subbed into the match: Holden subs in, 15 Jan 2013