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Portland’s Mikael Silvestre out 6-9 months with ACL tear

May 3, 2013, 5:58 PM EDT

New York Red Bulls v Portland Timbers Getty Images

The Portland Timbers’ release, just put out Friday afternoon, says that defender Mikael Silvestre will miss 6-9 months … but we can cut some clutter here and say it like this: the best, most experienced defender around Jeld-Wen Field is done for the year.

The injury happened just before the hour mark of last night’s scoreless draw with New England.

Even the most optimistic projections would put the former Manchester United center back out through October, which means through the entire regular season. The league’s regular season ends on Oct. 27.

Even if Caleb Porter’s team makes the playoffs – and strong Timbers’ performances were certainly suggestive that post-season soccer was in store for Oregon – there is almost no chance Silvestre could regain form and fitness in time to affect the playoffs.

So, that’s that. Truly, considering the Timbers’ roster, this may have been the most devastating injury they could suffer.

It’s a real blow to the Timbers at a time when momentum was building steadily. Porter’s team is unbeaten since mid-March, currently in third place in the West.

Another prominent MLS center back did make a stunningly rapid comeback just one year ago. Omar Gonzalez was back in the Galaxy’s starting 11 less than six months after his ACL tear. Then again, Gonzalez is 10 years younger than Silvestre, who will be 36 when and if he gets back on the field for the Timbers.

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