CARSON, Calif. – There was no luck to be found for the Irish at Euro 2012, but a loss (or three straight, rather) for the Boys In Green means a win for the LA Galaxy in the form of a returning Robbie Keane.
The Ireland captain is expected to return to Los Angeles this week and could play a role in Saturday’s match against Vancouver, Galaxy coach Bruce Arena told MLSsoccer.com on Tuesday.
Keane, 31, played every minute of Ireland’s failed Euro 2012 campaign, but whether he can get back at it and return to league play on short notice is still up in the air.
“We’re just going to see how he feels,” Arena said.
Ireland crashed out of the tournament, losing all three of their games by a combined 9-1. The Republic’s last match was on Monday, a 2-0 loss to Italy. If he does indeed play on Saturday, he will have to overcome a roughly 6,000-mile journey and will need to shake off the possible physical and mental effects of the tournament.
His status then will be evaluated once he gets back stateside.
“Every player needs a little time. We’ll just have to see,” Arena said. “We don’t know what he’s going to be like when he gets here. Hopefully he’s okay but we’ll see. We’ll make that decision when he returns.”
Still, if there’s one player who could pull off such a journey and step right back into the mix, it’s Keane, teammates said. After all, Keane debuted with the Galaxy a year ago and scored a goal despite arriving on the Wednesday before a Saturday match last August.
“It wouldn’t surprise me at all,” LA captain Landon Donovan said. “Robbie did it in the playoffs last year, he went away for two games, came back and looked like he hadn’t missed a beat. If there’s a guy who could do and has proven it, it’s Robbie. We could certainly use him, we need some spark.”