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Hirano out 6 weeks

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"March 17, 2010

VANCOUVER, BC - Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced today that defender Takashi Hirano has been sidelined with a knee ligament injury.

The former Japanese international suffered a mild strain to the medial collateral ligament of his left knee during pre-season training last week. As a result, the 35-year-old will be out of action for up to six weeks.

Having signed a one-year contract - plus an option - with the 'Caps last November, Hirano is entering his third year with the Blue and White after two successful seasons in Vancouver. In 2009, the left-sided fullback was named the club's Outstanding Defender after starting all but one of his 28 regular season appearances for 2,414 minutes of action. He also appeared in all four matches of last year's Nutrilite Canadian Championship and started all six playoff matches, as the Whitecaps reached the 2009 United Soccer Leagues First Division (USL-1) Championship Series before falling to Montreal Impact.

During his first season with the 'Caps, Hirano claimed the 2008 Whitecaps Newcomer of the Year award and was one of three Vancouver players to be named on the USL-1 All-League Second Team after helping the Whitecaps to their second USL-1 Championship title in three years. In two seasons with the 'Caps, Hirano has started 59 of his 68 total appearances for 5,333 minutes of action, scoring one goal and recording three assists for five points.

Prior to joining Vancouver, the defender/midfielder appeared for Japan at the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France and was one of the first players to surpass the mark of 350 total appearances during an impressive 15-year career in Japan's J.League Division One."


Hopefully he doesn't miss many games if any.

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Well at least they called it a mild injury. He is always fun to watch and does overlaps and crosses from the left as good as any. At 35 recovery can be a slow thing so here is hoping that 6 weeks is all it will be. Get well soon and best wishes.

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