Tuesday March 22nd, 2011

With one unfortunate tackle, Stuart Holden's breakout season is over.

With about 15 minutes remaining in Bolton's 1-0 loss to Manchester United on Saturday, Holden and Jonny Evans both went for a loose ball, sliding to the ground at the same moment. Holden's upper leg and Evans' studs clashed in a gruesome meeting.

The result for Evans was a straight red card. The result for Holden was a gash above his left knee that required 26 stitches and a further undisclosed diagnosis (along with surgery) that will reportedly keep Holden on the sidelines for the next six months.

Holden had established himself as one of the top ball-winning midfielders in the Premier League while helping Bolton to a steady place in top half of the league table all season.

"Stuart has been outstanding for me this season and he has shown in his performances that he is one of the best midfielders in the Barclays Premier League," Bolton manager Owen Coyle told the team's official website. "He has such desire, strength of character and a winning mentality, and he will draw on all those attributes in his rehabilitation."

For the second consecutive summer, Holden will be forced to be a spectator during a premier international competition. Save for a late cameo against England, Holden was a constant on the U.S. bench during the World Cup while still recuperating from a broken leg after being on the wrong end of a horrid challenge by Dutchman Nigel De Jong in a friendly last March.

He was expected to play a big role in the United States' upcoming friendlies against Argentina and Paraguay and during this summer's CONCACAF Gold Cup, perhaps even as a starting central midfielder. Instead, he can only hope he won't miss too much time at the start of the 2011-2012 Premier League campaign.

One American whose role at the Gold Cup might grow even more with Holden's absence is Clint Dempsey, who is enjoying a record-breaking season at Fulham. He topped Brian McBride's record for goals by an American in a single Premier League season when he beat international teammate and Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard over the weekend for his 10th league goal.

Among the other highlights for Americans over the weekend included Freddy Adu scoring his second goal in Turkey, defender Zak Whitbread scoring his first goal in more than two years, Chris Rolfe seeing his first action in almost a year and Maurice Edu and Rangers winning some silverware. Here's how the Americans playing abroad fared this past week (statistics encompass all competitions):

Premier League

Michael Bradley, M, Aston Villa -- In the 18, did not play in Villa's 1-0 loss to Wolverhampton on Saturday. SEASON: 24 games, 21 starts, 4 goals

Clint Dempsey, M/F, Fulham -- Started, played 90 minutes and scored a goal in Fulham's 2-1 loss to Everton on Saturday. Dempsey hit a left-footed shot from the top of the penalty area with his first touch to slice Fulham's deficit in half. The goal was his 10th in league play, a single-season record for an American in the Premier League. SEASON: 35 games, 32 starts, 11 goals

Brad Friedel, GK, Aston Villa -- Started, played 90 minutes and made two saves in Villa's 1-0 loss to Wolverhampton on Saturday. SEASON: 34 games, 34 starts, 106 saves, 54 goals allowed, 5 clean sheets

Marcus Hahnemann, GK, Wolverhampton -- In the 18, did not play in Wolves' 1-0 victory over Aston Villa on Saturday. SEASON: 17 games, 17 starts, 59 saves, 28 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Stuart Holden, M, Bolton -- Started, played 76 minutes but exited with a knee injury in Bolton's 1-0 loss to Manchester United on Saturday. Holden was on the wrong end of Jonny Evans' studs-up tackle as both went for a 50-50 ball. Holden ended up with a large open wound above his knee that required 26 stitches, and further tests determined that he'll need surgery and be out for the next six months. SEASON: 29 games, 27 starts, 2 goals

Tim Howard, GK, Everton -- Started, played 90 minutes and made one save in Everton's 2-1 victory over Fulham on Saturday. SEASON: 34 games, 34 starts, 95 saves, 43 goals allowed, 6 clean sheets

Jermaine Jones, M, Blackburn -- Started, played 90 minutes in Blackburn's 2-2 draw with Blackpool on Saturday. SEASON: 23 games, 22 starts, 1 goal

Jonathan Spector, M/D, West Ham -- Not in the 18 for West Ham's 0-0 draw with Tottenham on Saturday. SEASON: 16 games, 11 starts, 4 goals

Championship

Conor Doyle, F, Derby County -- In the 18, did not play in Derby County's 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday. SEASON: 13 games, 5 starts

Brad Guzan, GK, Hull City -- Started, played 90 minutes and made seven saves in Hull City's 1-1 draw with Norwich City on Saturday. SEASON: 17 games, 17 starts, 84 saves, 17 goals allowed, 5 clean sheets

Eddie Johnson, F, Preston North End -- Started, played 85 minutes in Preston North End's 3-0 victory over Scunthorpe United on Tuesday. Johnson also started and played 74 minutes in Preston North End's 2-1 victory over Coventry City on Saturday. SEASON: 22 games, 10 starts

Eric Lichaj, D, Leeds United -- Started, played 90 minutes and was credited with an own goal in Leeds' 2-0 loss to Sheffield United on Saturday. SEASON: 16 games, 14 starts

Zak Whitbread, D, Norwich City -- Started, played 90 minutes, picked up a yellow card and scored a 27th-minute goal in Norwich City's 1-1 draw with Hull City on Saturday. Whitbread rose above a crowd for a 10-yard header off a free kick for his first goal since joining Norwich City last season. SEASON: 15 games, 13 starts, 1 goal

League One

Mike Grella, F, Swindon Town -- Started, played 62 minutes in Swindon Town's 0-0 draw with Huddersfield Town on Saturday. SEASON: 17 games, 12 starts, 4 goals

Anton Peterlin, M, Plymouth Argyle -- In the 18, came on as a 72nd-minute substitute in Plymouth Argyle's 1-1 draw with Carlisle United on Tuesday. Peterlin started and played 90 minutes in Plymouth Argyle's 1-0 loss to Rochdale on Saturday. SEASON: 8 games, 6 starts

Frank Simek, D, Carlisle United -- Started, played 90 minutes in Carlisle's 1-1 draw with Plymouth Argyle on Tuesday. Simek also started and played 90 minutes in Carlisle's 1-0 victory over AFC Bournemouth on Saturday. SEASON: 46 games, 46 starts

League Two

Jon-Paul Pittman, F, Wycombe Wanderers -- In the 18, came on as a 66th-minute substitute in Wycombe's 1-1 draw with Shrewsbury Town on Saturday. SEASON: 15 games, 8 starts, 4 goals

Bundesliga

DaMarcus Beasley, M, Hannover 96 -- Not in the 18 for Hannover's 2-0 victory over TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Saturday. SEASON: 4 games

Timothy Chandler, M/D, FC Nurnberg -- Started, played 72 minutes, picked up two yellow cards and was sent off in Nurnberg's 3-1 loss to Werder Bremen on Saturday. Chandler received cautions in the 54th and 72nd minutes, the latter for a bad challenge. SEASON: 11 games, 6 starts, 1 goal

Steve Cherundolo, D, Hannover 96 -- Started, played 90 minutes in Hannover's 2-0 victory over TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Saturday. SEASON: 27 games, 27 starts

Ricardo Clark, M/D, Eintracht Frankfurt -- Started, played 61 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Frankfurt's 2-1 victory over St. Pauli on Saturday. SEASON: 9 games, 6 starts

Daniel Williams, D, SC Freiburg -- Not in the 18 for Freiburg's 2-1 loss to Bayern Munich on Saturday. SEASON: 5 games, 2 starts

2. Bundesliga

Edson Buddle, F, FC Ingolstadt 04 -- Started, played 76 minutes in Ingolstadt's 1-1 draw with Hertha Berlin on Friday. SEASON: 9 games, 6 starts, 2 goals

Luis Robles, GK, Karlsruhe SC -- In the 18, did not play in Karlsruhe's 5-1 loss to TSV 1860 Munich on Friday. SEASON: 18 games, 18 starts, 65 saves, 37 goals allowed, 4 clean sheets

Bobby Wood, F, TSV 1860 Munich -- In the 18, did not play in Munich's 5-1 victory over Karlsruhe on Friday. SEASON: 5 games

David Yelldell, GK, MSV Duisburg -- Started, played 90 minutes, made two saves and earned the clean sheet in Duisburg's 1-0 victory over Fortuna Dusseldorf on Friday. SEASON: 32 games, 32 starts, 76 saves, 26 goals allowed, 12 clean sheets

3. Liga

Matt Taylor, F, Rot Weiss Ahlen -- Started, played 90 minutes in Rot Weiss Ahlen's 3-0 victory over Dynamo Dresden on Saturday. SEASON: 21 games, 21 starts, 13 goals

Ligue 1

Carlos Bocanegra, D, St. Etienne -- Started, played 55 minutes in St. Etienne's 0-0 draw with Lorient on Saturday. SEASON: 26 games, 26 starts, 2 goals

Eredivisie

Oguchi Onyewu, D, FC Twente Enschede -- Started, played 90 minutes in Twente's 2-0 loss to Zenit-St. Petersburg in the second leg of their UEFA Europa League Round of 16 tie on Thursday. Twente advanced to the quarterfinals on aggregate, 3-2. Onyewu was in the 18 but did not play in Twente's 2-0 victory over Excelsior in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 11 games, 11 starts

Super Lig

Jozy Altidore, F, Bursaspor -- In the 18, came on as a halftime substitute in Bursaspor's 0-0 draw with Ankaragucu on Monday. SEASON: 18 games, 11 starts, 2 goals

1. Lig

Freddy Adu, M, Caykur Rizespor -- Started, played 66 minutes and scored the opening goal of Rizespor's 2-0 victory over Akhisar Belediyespor on Sunday. Adu pounced on a rebound a few yards from goal, took a touch and finished to score in the 22nd minute. SEASON: 5 games, 5 starts, 2 goals

Eerste Klasse

Sacha Kljestan, M, RSC Anderlecht -- Started, played 45 minutes in Anderlecht's 3-2 victory over Racing Genk on Sunday. SEASON: 26 games, 21 starts, 3 goals

Liga de Honra

Greg Garza, D, G.D. Estoril Praia -- In the 18, did not play in Estoril's 2-1 loss to Desportivo Aves on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game

Tony Taylor, F, G.D. Estoril Praia -- Started, played 90 minutes in Estoril's 2-1 loss to Desportivo Aves on Saturday. SEASON: 18 games, 4 starts, 4 goals

Premier League

Dominic Cervi, GK, Celtic FC -- Not in the 18 for Celtic's 2-1 victory over Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the quarterfinals of the Scottish Cup on Wednesday or for Celtic's 2-1, extra-time loss to Rangers in the final of the League Cup on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Maurice Edu, M, Rangers FC -- Started, played 90 minutes in Rangers' 1-0 loss to PSV Eindhoven in the second leg of their UEFA Europa League Round of 16 tie on Thursday. Rangers were eliminated from the tournament on a 1-0 aggregate. Edu also started, played 120 minutes in Rangers' 2-1, extra-time victory over Celtic in the final of the League Cup on Sunday. SEASON: 36 games, 29 starts, 5 goals

Primera Division

Daniel Antunez, M/D, Estudiantes Tecos -- Not in the 18 for Tecos' 0-0 draw with Tigres UANL on Friday. SEASON: 2 games, 1 start

Jonathan Bornstein, M/D, Tigres UANL -- In the 18, did not play in Tigres' 0-0 draw with Estudiantes Tecos on Friday. SEASON: 4 games, 4 starts

Edgar Castillo, D, Puebla -- In the 18, did not play in Puebla's 1-0 victory over Necaxa on Sunday. SEASON: 5 games, 3 starts

Herculez Gomez, F, Pachuca -- In the 18, came on as a halftime substitute and picked up a yellow card in Pachuca's 0-0 draw with Pumas UNAM on Sunday. SEASON: 10 games, 3 starts

Sonny Guadarrama, M, Atlante -- Not in the 18 for Atlante's 5-1 victory over Chiapas on Saturday. SEASON: 6 games

Sammy Ochoa, F, Estudiantes Tecos -- Not in the 18 for Tecos' 0-0 draw with Tigres UANL on Friday. SEASON: 0 games

Adrian Ruelas, F, Santos Laguna -- Not in the 18 for Santos' 1-0 loss to Morelia on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game

Jose Francisco Torres, M, Pachuca -- Started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Pachuca's 0-0 draw with Pumas UNAM on Sunday. SEASON: 8 games, 7 starts

Superliga

Clarence Goodson, D, Brondby IF -- Not in the 18 for Brondby's 3-1 loss to FC Copenhagen on Sunday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Michael Parkhurst, D, FC Nordsjaelland -- In the 18, did not play in Nordsjaelland's 2-1 loss to Esbjerg on Sunday. SEASON: 18 games, 17 starts

Chris Rolfe, F, Aalborg BK -- Started, played 45 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Aalborg's 2-1 victory over Lyngby on Sunday. The game was Rolfe's first since last April. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Marcus Tracy, F, Aalborg BK -- Not in the 18 for Aalborg's 2-1 victory over Lyngby on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

First Division

Benny Feilhaber, M, AGF Aarhus -- Started, played 45 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Aarhus' 2-0 victory over Hobro on Friday. SEASON: 20 games, 19 starts, 7 goals

Tippeligaen

Mikkel Diskerud, M, Stabaek -- Started, played 90 minutes in Stabaek's 7-0 loss to Lillestrom on Sunday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Josh Gatt, M, Molde FK -- In the 18, came on as a 57th-minute substitute in Molde's 3-0 loss to Sarpsborg 08 on Friday. SEASON: 1 game

Avi Creditor is a freelance writer based in Washington, D.C.

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