LA Galaxy manager Bruce Arena has confirmed this morning that Landon Donovan will be returning to the Galaxy for the 2013 season. Donovan was not at the first day of training camp, but Arena expects to work out a timeline in the near future.
"We've given him a bit more time off," said Arena. "He's definitely playing this year, it's just working out a return date that works for all of us."
Arena said the Galaxy could have as many as eight scrimmages and friendlies to get players in shape this preseason. Early February could be a possibility for Donovan, which would be about the same time Omar Gonzalez and A.J. DeLaGarza would return from United States national team camp and Robbie Keane would return from training with Tottenham.
"I think he just needed an extended leave of absence," said Arena. "He's had a couple years that have taken its toll, and he needs a little bit more time."
When asked if Donovan was the type of player who knew how to get himself ready for the upcoming season, Arena maintained that every player needs that structured preseason period to get ready for what's ahead. Thirty four games plus any national team time and playoffs is quite a lot to prepare for.