Mason Stajduhar

Horror Injury to Mason Stajduhar Raises MLS Guideline Concerns

Orlando City’s goalkeeper Mason Stajduhar was rushed to the hospital after a collision with NYCFC’s Malachi Jones igniting concerns over Major League Soccer’s current officiating guidelines.

Serious Injury Overshadows Match

Orlando City suffered a 4-2 defeat to New York City FC on Friday night but the focus quickly shifted to the severe injury of their 26-year-old goalkeeper Mason Stajduhar.

Filling in for Pedro Gallese who is away at the Copa América with Peru Stajduhar started strong but collided with Malachi Jones just 17 minutes into the game. The collision left him with a serious lower leg injury requiring him to be stretchered off the field.

Orlando defender Dagur Dan Thorhallsson described the horrifying moment:

“The ball came in behind me, and then I see Mason run out. I think he kicks the ball and the other guy comes, and I just hear a loud, basically like a click. He’s screaming and I didn’t know what it was. And then I look at his leg, and his leg was dangling, and I just looked away and basically just wanted to go, so I went to the stands, and just stood there with my eyes closed.”

Orlando Coach Criticizes Officials

The incident occurred when Jones chased a long through-ball colliding with Stajduhar. Although Jones was entitled to challenge for the ball he was clearly offside a fact that replays confirmed. The play continued due to current guidelines that recommend allowing such situations to unfold.

Orlando City head coach Oscar Pareja was critical of the officials’ decision to let play continue.

“They need to get better at this ruling of just allowing [the game to continue] when the offside is very obvious,” Pareja said post-match.

“I think they need to flag the play. This is a very unnecessary play just to let it go, and we can avoid a lot of injuries. Today is a demonstration that we can do better.”

The incident has sparked a debate about the need for clearer and more immediate officiating decisions to prevent such injuries in the future.

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