MARIETTA, Ga. — Atlanta United fullback George Bello will miss two to three months with a right adductor injury, the club announced Friday. Bello has not played with the first team since a season-opening 3-1 loss at Herediano in Concacaf Champions League play Feb. 21.
Bello, a 17-year-old Homegrown talent, originally sustained the injury in the game against Herediano. He started Atlanta United 2’s 2-0 win against Hartford Athletic in a rehab assignment March 9, but subbed off after aggravating the adductor. Bello returned to first-team training last week. But he suffered a setback in training Tuesday, per the club.
Manager Frank de Boer said Friday Bello will undergo an operation “soon.”
Bello plays at left fullback in a back-four formation and left wingback in a back three. Depth at those positions has been thin since Mikey Ambrose went down with a torn right meniscus last month. Brek Shea, an offseason free-agent signing, has been the No. 1 option of late on the left side. Ambrose returned to training this week, but he has not yet participated in contact drills. De Boer said he hopes Ambrose can return to full training next week.
“Very disappointed to have suffered an injury that will keep me out for 2-3 months,” Bello posted on Twitter. “It’s going to be really hard not being able to be out there and playing for that long. I won’t lose focus though, and will come back even stronger than I left off.
“I’ll try my best to stay positive and trust God that this setback will make me a better player and person. Appreciate all the love and prayers. Road to recovery starts now. I’ll be back soon.”
Atlanta (2-3-2, 8 points) travels to face Sporting Kansas City (2-4-2, 10 points) this Sunday at Children’s Mercy Park. Kickoff is scheduled for 9 p.m. ET.