Minnesota United defender Romain Metanire remained in France on Friday while the team awaits his return from a trip home to get his U.S. green card.
"He's going to get it. Whether he gets back in time, we don't know," said coach Adrian Heath, whose team plays host to Seattle on Sunday afternoon at Allianz Field.
The Loons' starting right back, Metanire has missed games against San Jose and at Colorado. In that same time, starting attacker Robin Lod went home to Finland from the European championship to get his own green card. He was back in Minnesota before that July 3 game against San Jose but did not play.
Heath said Metanire's green card has been granted, but he's waiting for his passport's return. Green cards for both Lod and Metanire will give the Loons two more international-player slots in this next transfer window that runs through Aug. 5.
"We're just waiting on him getting home now," Heath said. "It has been a real frustration. It's one of those things we can't really do anything about because they've got his passport."
The Loons played without Metanire and injured Michael Boxall and Bakaye Dibassy on July 7 in a 2-0 loss at Colorado. That left the team with just one-fourth of its starting back line – left back Chase Gasper — available and healthy.
They recalled loaned-out defender Callum Montgomery so they would have another healthy center back. He trained on Friday.
Sunday 'too soon' for Boxall?
Boxall came outside at the Loons' Blaine training facility Friday and ran on the grass on his own, supervised by an athletic trainer. He missed the Colorado game and a trip with his New Zealand national team to the Tokyo Olympics because of an upper thigh/groin injury suffered July 3 against San Jose.
Heath called Boxall "getting better by the day," but suggested Sunday against Seattle might be "a day too soon." Heath said he's certain Boxall will be ready by a July 24 home game against Portland.