New York Red Bulls star midfielder Lewis Morgan is going back on the shelf with a new, undisclosed injury that head coach Troy Lesesne confirmed as “concerning,” on Tuesday ahead of their mid-week match with Charlotte FC.
There is no timetable for a return as of now, but Lesesne divulged that his absence won’t be a short one.
“It’s still one that’s going to be a little while. It’s concerning,” Lesesne said. “We should probably communicate that it’s not going to be a short-term injury. I haven’t put a timeline on it only because I don’t want to do an injustice to the medical side of it as well as for Lewis.
“We don’t want to put anything that’s unnecessarily long on him or unnecessarily short for his potential return.”
The 26-year-old Scottish playmaker was forced to leave mid-match during the Red Bulls’ 3-0 loss to Orlando SC. It was just his second appearance since returning from a hip injury that held him out for two months.
It’s put an understandable strain on the Red Bulls’ attack this season considering Morgan was the team’s most valuable presence offensively. During his first season with New York last year after being acquired from Inter Miami, he recorded 14 goals with four assists across 32 appearances in MLS.
Without him in 2023, the Red Bulls have scored just 11 goals in 17 matches, which ranks dead-last in the league. Still, a win over Charlotte on Wednesday could see New York jump up from 12th in the Eastern Conference to a potential tie for ninth — which is the final Wild Card spot for MLS’ new postseason format.
The sooner Morgan is able to return, the better the Red Bulls’ chances of bolstering a postseason spot becomes. Including the Charlotte match, 17 matches remain in the regular season.
“I’m hopeful,” Lesesne began. “I’m hopeful that we get him back at some stage, but I wouldn’t expect it in the short term.”