Goalkeeper David Ochoa Claims He Is Not Allowed To Play Or Train For RSL — What's Going On?
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David Ochoa — shenanigans included — was one of Real Salt Lake's best players in 2021. The goalkeeper played 25 MLS games, delivering five clean sheets, and earned a call to represent the Mexican national team after ditching his past with the USMNT.
In 2022, however, Ochoa is a ghost. He hasn't played a single match in the current MLS campaign, and several fans have wondered if he is still part of the squad.
The mystery grew so big that Ochoa himself took to his Instagram account to explain why he is not a part of the team and, in doing it, he dropped a bomb.
"For those of you asking... yes, I'm still an RSL player," he posted. "I'm just not allowed to train with the team ... and can't leave."
— Caleb Turner (@calebturner23) July 12, 2022
Why is David Ochoa not playing for Real Salt Lake?
The reason why Ochoa is not allowed to play or train with Real Salt Lake's first team is not clear at all.
Questioned about it, the goalkeeper answered again via Instagram.
"No clue. I can only train with the (Real) Monarchs. I thought after representing this crest for six years, they would have some time of love for me," he said.
Ochoa was part of the preseason, but a quad injury took him out for a few weeks. Later, he had some issues with his fingers and a personal matter that delayed his return to the team. The goalkeeper eventually played an Open Cup game (a 1-0 defeat against North Colorado Hailstorm), but then he disappeared from the map again.
Ochoa has a quad injury (x3) to start the seasonHe then has a finger issue on 4/17
Plays in the USOC on 4/20
Misses game on 5/8 for an “excused personal absence”
Dislocated finger on 5/11
Misses game on 5/14 as a “coach’s decision”
— Alex Mower (@alexmower) May 18, 2022
Well, until his posts on Instagram.
With his contract expiring in December, some are pointing out that maybe there is a conflict in the negotiation that triggered the decision to drop him from the squad. And if we read the last statement from RSL's general eanager, Elliot Fall, between the lines, maybe it is not a far-fetched theory.
"All I can say with regards to David is that we as a club have been in very frequent communication with him and his representatives," he said to ESPN700. "We are supportive of him and are looking for opportunities for him, both internally and externally."
Is there a transfer on the books? MLS? Liga MX? Well, time will tell.
RSL's next game is next Sunday, July 17, vs. Sporting Kansas City.
Will Ochoa return to the team or not? Who knows.