Skip to content

Report: Josh Saunders in MLS substance abuse treatment program

May 1, 2012, 8:46 PM EDT

Josh Saunders AP

A concerning story out of Los Angeles, but one that becomes less concerning the second we hear about it. After all, if the news has reached our eyes and ears, the story’s likely heading in the right direction.

That’s how sports’ substance abuse programs work. You don’t hear about the problem until a player has taken steps to correct it, however those steps come about.

LA Galaxy goalkeeper Josh Saunders is now on that road, his surprise weekend absence from Galaxy’s draw with FC Dallas now given unfortunate context. According to the LA Times, the 31-year-old Cal product has been enrolled in the league’s substance abuse program, though Galaxy officials are denying any failed drug tests.

As Kevin Baxter notes, we can look back one year to see how things go from there; at least, how they go as far as on the field matters are concerned:

Saunders missed last Saturday’s tie with FC Dallas and is unavailable for Wednesday night’s match in Seattle, with Coach Bruce Arena saying only that the keeper was missing for “personal reasons.”  That’s the same language the New England Revolution used when midfielder Shalrie Joseph missed six weeks early in the 2010 season while involved in the substance abuse program.

Joseph was also suspended for five games; Saunders could be handed a similar penalty.

All of which is pretty irrelevant. One day, Josh Saunders is going to come back. Whether he’s fined or suspended in the interim doesn’t really matter. He’ll be away getting better.

In the meantime, Bill Gaudette will be in goal. Hopefully, in a couple of months, this is no more meaningful than Joseph’s brief absence at the beginning of last season.

Latest Posts
  1. Stoke City sign ex-Barcelona, PSV winger, free agent Ibrahim Afellay

    Jul 27, 2015, 8:39 PM EDT

    Ibrahim Affelay, FC Barcelona Getty Images

    Afellay makes four ex-Blaugranas on the books at Stoke, where Mark Hughes is aiming for European qualification.

  2. Bundesliga teams are scared of Bayern Munich — It needs to stop, says Mats Hummels

    Jul 27, 2015, 7:56 PM EDT

    Mats Hummels, Borussia Dortmund Mats Hummels, Borussia Dortmund

    As Bayern chase their fourth straight Bundesliga title (it would be a first), Mats Hummels says the league’s other teams need to stop fearing them.

  3. Official: Chelsea legend Didier Drogba announced as Montreal Impact Designated Player

    Jul 27, 2015, 6:06 PM EDT

    Didier Drogba, Chelsea FC & Montreal Impact Didier Drogba, Chelsea FC & Montreal Impact

    Drogba has arrived in MLS, and he even got to choose which team he’ll play for — kinda.

  4. MLS Player of the Week — Week 21: Orlando City SC’s Cyle Larin

    Jul 27, 2015, 5:15 PM EDT

    Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC

    Cyle Larin bagged his first pro hat trick on Sunday, somehow outshining David Villa at Yankee Stadium.

  5. MLS Team of the Week — Stars of Week 21

    Jul 27, 2015, 4:30 PM EDT

    David Villa, New York City FC David Villa, New York City FC

    Villa, Giovinco, Finlay and more — this week’s MLS Team of the Week.

  6. Premier League 2015-16 season preview: Bournemouth

    Jul 27, 2015, 3:00 PM EDT

    Bournemouth logo

    The first of three newly promoted sides, do the Cherries have what it takes to stay in the Premier League?

  7. VIDEO: PST Extra – Premier League’s big transfer deals; which clubs need to spend more?

    Jul 27, 2015, 2:24 PM EDT

    Louis van Gaal, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Matteo Darmian Louis van Gaal, Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Matteo Darmian

    JPW dissects the top deals, discusses which clubs have done the best business and which need to get a shift on.

  8. Premier League 2015-16 season preview: Aston Villa

    Jul 27, 2015, 12:50 PM EDT

    Aston_Villa_Logo_851684732

    Can Sherwood rejuvenate Villa and show progress is being made? Losing Benteke and Delph will hurt his chances of doing that.

  9. Amid reports of journalist brawl, Mexico boss Miguel Herrera looks ahead to USMNT showdown

    Jul 27, 2015, 10:20 AM EDT

    We will see some more epic celebrations from Herrera this summer? AP

    El Tri boss could be in a lot of trouble if these reports are true.

  10. Premier League 2015-16 season preview: Arsenal

    Jul 27, 2015, 9:00 AM EDT

    arsenal logo

    Can the Gunners improve on their third-place finish from last season?

  11. Mexico 3-1 Jamaica: El Tri overpowers Cinderella story to win Gold Cup

    Jul 26, 2015, 9:59 PM EDT

    Mexico Getty Images

    It’s been an ugly tournament for El Tri, but they showed up ready to play in the finals.

  12. PL Friendly Roundup: Arsenal tops Wolfsburg, Everton runs over Hearts

    Jul 26, 2015, 9:32 PM EDT

    Lukaku Getty Images

    Arsenal won its second preseason trophy, while Romelu Lukaku logged a hat-trick for the Toffees.

  13. Wenger confirms Arsenal will not loan out 17-year-old Jeff Reine-Adelaide

    Jul 26, 2015, 8:26 PM EDT

    Reine-Adelaide Getty Images

    The French youth international impressed in the friendly against Wolfsburg, and Arsene Wenger wants him to stick around the Gunneres’ system.

  14. FOLLOW LIVE: Mexico and Jamaica battle in Gold Cup final

    Jul 26, 2015, 7:29 PM EDT

    Mexico Getty Images

    Banged up Mexico takes on rigid Jamaica in a scintillating Gold Cup final matchup.

  15. MLS Snapshot: DC United 3-2 Philadelphia Union (video)

    Jul 26, 2015, 7:05 PM EDT

    Espindola Getty Images

    Fabian Espindola proved dangerous next to Alvaro Saborio as the Argentinian completed D.C. United’s home comeback with a late winner after a slow start.

Featured video

Analyzing PL clubs in the transfer window