BRENT LATHAM - Thursday, February 5, 2009
Hannover 96 press officer Andreas Kuhnt has told YA that defender Steve Cherundolo will not be ready for next Wednesday's showdown with Mexico in Columbus.

"He's been out of training for about four weeks and it's a long time, and he needs to go back slowly. I don't think he will be back on Wednesday for the game. That's too early for him to return."

The national team and Bundesliga veteran has been slowed this winter by a hip injury. Hannover expects him back in light training this week.

"He will be back Thursday with a little bit of running then he will be in [full] training maybe in the next week, and we all hope he will play again in the game against Stuttgart."

Kuhnt says Cherundolo's injury is difficult to diagnose, and that it could take longer for him to get back on the field.

"We can't say it for sure because it's little bit difficult with his leg injury. We will wait, but I've heard this morning from our trainer that he will be back with small running maybe this afternoon then he will go on tomorrow."

Hannover, which currently sit thirteenth in the Bundesliga, seven points clear of relegation, will visit second to bottom Energie Cottbus this weekend. Cherundolo, a regular when healthy, has played in fourteen games this year.