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Alphonso Davies doubtful for Canada vs USMNT due to heart inflammation

Joe Prince-Wright, Andy Edwards and Nick Mendola look ahead to the United States' next World Cup qualifying window, with big clashes against Canada and El Salvador on tap at the end of January.

Bayern Munich star Alphonso Davies could miss Canada’s three upcoming 2022 World Cup qualifiers, including their top-of-the-table clash with the USMNT on Jan. 30, after signs of mild myocarditis were discovered during a routine medical check.

[ TRANSFER CHAT: USMNT players potentially (or already) on the move in January ]

Davies, alongside eight other Bayern Munich players, tested positive for COVID-19 upon returning from the Bundesliga’s winter break at the start of the new year. An ultrasound taken as part of the club’s post-COVID-19, return-to-action protocols uncovered Alphonso Davies’ heart inflammation, which Bayern manager Julian Nagelsmann said would keep the 21-year-old out of training for “weeks,” at minimum.

Bayern Munich are comfortably sat atop the Bundesliga table with six points separating themselves and 2nd-place Borussia Dortmund. Canada (16 points), on the other hand, have a much smaller advantage, and therefore a much greater need for Davies’ services. With the USMNT (15), Mexico (14) and Panama (14) all within one game’s striking distance, Canada could fall from 1st to 4th (and into the inter-confederation playoff place) with a defeat to Honduras in their next game (Jan. 27).

[ MORE: USMNT strikers Ricardo Pepi, Daryl Dike set for European transfers ]

Nagelsmann said the following about Davies’ diagnosis and potential timeline for returning to training:

“Yesterday, during our follow-up examination that we do with every player that has had COVID-19, we detected signs of mild myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle.

“He has stopped training for now, so he won’t be available to us for the next weeks.

“This myocarditis isn’t too dramatic based on the ultrasound, but more simply signs of an inflammation. Nevertheless, it needs to heal and that will no doubt take some time.”

Alphonso Davies has been sensational once again this season, racking up five assists in 21 appearances between the Bundesliga and Champions League, while also steadily improving the defensive side of his game.

For Canada, he has been the star of the show. The Canucks were involved in two previous rounds of World Cup qualifying to reach the current (final) round, with Davies scoring four goals and assisting eight more. Davies’ creativity and service from the left wing has helped center forward Cyle Larin score his CONCACAF-leading 11 goals in qualifying.

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