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LAFC quash rumors that goalkeeper Luis Lopez is leaving the team

Player still hurt but reportedly close to full training.

Nigeria v Honduras Bronze Medal Match: Men’s Football - Olympics: Day 15 Photo by Pedro Vilela/Getty Images

Los Angeles Football Club have four goalkeepers on their roster at present, and only one, Tyler Miller, has played in competitive action so far. So it’s probably not surprising that another one, Luis Lopez, has been the subject of rumors in the Honduran press recently that he will be departing the club and return to Honduras because Bob Bradley did not believe Lopez was in his plans for the club.

Diario Diez reported at the end of last month that Lopez would be returning to Real España, the Honduran club where he made his name and became a Honduran international, ahead of the start of the 2018 Apertura season.

However, a subsequent report from Diez quoted Real España brass as denying Lopez’s return, saying they were looking forward to Lopez making his debut with LAFC soon.

That was backed up by LAFC, as a team spokesperson was quoted in an AS report this week that Lopez will not be departing the team.

“Luis is still with the team, is recovering from the injury...He came here to try to be number one, Luis is going to stay here, he has a contract,” LAFC communications manager Diego Garcia said to AS.

Lopez, 24, has been out officially with a stress fracture in his leg all season. He had surgery on it in October, and LAFC said they knew about the injury when they signed him. In early February, the team said he would be out of full training an estimated 4-6 weeks.

The fact that his recovery has taken longer, plus LAFC’s signing of Quillan Roberts on May 30, means the rumors to a return to Honduras for Lopez are not necessarily surprising. But for now, both teams involved in the rumors say he’s not going anywhere.

On a related note, LAFC’s latest training report from Vince La Rosa on the team’s website on Thursday offered an update about Lopez:

In other injury news, goalkeeper Luis Lopez was more active in training today. Taking part in a variety of drills with the other goalkeepers, Lopez is “going to be back into regular training soon,” according to Bradley.

“Soon” doesn’t have a specific timeline, but if Lopez isn’t medically cleared there isn’t much to be done. But as it stands, Lopez appears to still be in the mix for LAFC, when he’s cleared and ready to go.

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