Bobby Burling had ankle surgery on Tuesday and will be out for up to eight weeks. It's good that this was done now as the end of his recovery time will coincide with the early part of the preseason.
Burling will likely play a key role for Chivas USA in 2009. With Claudio Suarez a question mark next season, Shavar Thomas is the only sure bet to start at central defense. Thomas is a rock back there but Jim Curtin is not. Suarez was injured and if he returns there is no guarantee he won't have an injury-riddled campaign.
In college, Burling was a striker and picked up defense only after he joined Chivas USA. He didn't play in 2007 but was tossed into the fray this season out of necessity. He held his own and I thought was fairly valuable in the middle part of the season. With some more seasoning, I could see Burling holding down a starting spot soon enough.
Injuries did not escape Burling though and now he's on the shelf. But at least he should be healthy February.