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Keller expected to rejoin training today, questionable for weekend after head trauma.

By Robert Wagman (in Washington, D.C.)
Christopher Courtney (in Germany)
Willy Calderon (in England)
Keith Richardson (in Germany)
Mark Flannery (in France)
and Robert B. Lane, Jr. (in Spain)

Kasey Keller
American goalkeeper Kasey Keller (right) was stunned by a blow to his head and forced to leave Rayo Vallecano's 3-1 victory over Valladolid in the 75th minute. His injury is not considered to be serious.
(Tuesday, April 3, 2001) -- American goalkeeper Kasey Keller suffered a mild concussion in a 75th minute penalty-area collision in Rayo Vallecanoís 3-1 victory over Valladolid. He staggered off the field, according to a Rayo statement, suffering from vision problems and was immediately taken by ambulance to Campo Grande de Valladolid hospital, where he was examined, X-rayed and kept overnight for observation.

Keller was diagnosed with "...slight cranial damage without organic damage. The tests revealed nothing that was worrying," Valladolid doctor Fernando Baro said. "He did not lose consciousness."

Keller was expected to return to training today with the Madrid club, but is listed as questionable for the weekend match.

Keller played a strong match for Rayo which triumphed with two goals in the second half. Host Valladolid started quickly, almost scoring in the first minute when Alberto Lopez beat Keller, but saw his header hit the crossbar and bounce away.

Keller made several good saves, including stopping defender Gabriel Heinze in the 19th and 31st minutes. He was beaten in the 39th minute when an unmarked Jose Caminero headed in a nicely placed cross.

On Sunday, it was another shutout performance from United States goalkeeper Brad Friedel to lead Blackburn Rovers over local rival Burnley 5-0 in the English first division. Friedel made two nice first half saves, especially a 33rd minute stop on Glenn Little.

In the 37th minute, it appeared Burnley had scored when Friedel made a point-blank stop on unmarked Gareth Taylor's bullet header, only to see Ian Moore easily put the rebound away. The play was ruled offside.

In the final 45 minutes, Friedel had an easy time of it as Rovers completely dominated.

Coupled with Boltonís 2-2 home draw with Wimbledon, Blackburn, with two games in hand, moved into a tie for second place, the final spot for automatic promotion.

In Scotland, U.S. midfielder Claudio Reyna was still not full strength with his groin injury, but Glasgow Rangersí long list of injuries forced manager Dick Advocaat to play him for the full 90 minutes on a 2-0 setback Saturday to Dundee United. By conceding two late goals, Rangers put into doubt a second-place finish - and Champions League qualification.

Reyna was involved in Rangers only good scoring opportunity of the day. In the 23rd minute, forward Tore Andre Flo worked well to keep possession at the right corner flag, then laid the ball back to Reyna, whose pinpoint cross just missed Marcus Gayle's head at the near post.

In the Netherlands, American midfielder Earnie Stewart, coming off his excellent match for the U.S. in its 2-1 victory at Honduras Wednesday night, played the full 90 minutes on Saturday for NAC Breda which defeated Fortuna 1-0. Stewart was involved in the play that resulted in the only goal for Breda which dominated possession for most of the match.

In Israel, American attacker Hamisi Amani-Dove is playing for Hapoel Tsafririm Holon in the nationís first division. This week, Amani-Dove played the full 90 minutes and scored a goal in the 70th minute for a 3-0 lead in his teamís 4-0 decision over traditional rival Hapoel Petah Tikva.

German and French leagues were not in action because of World Cup qualifying.

Riding the Pine:

Forward Eddie Lewis (Fulham, England) -- Just back from duty with the U.S. national team in Honduras, he did not dress for a 4-1 triumph over Tranmere Rovers, building Fulhamís first division lead to 16 points. Lewis said he does not know where he will play next season, but the assumption is that his tenure with promotion-bound Fulham is at an end. His representatives are reportedly talking with Major League Soccer as well as several English teams.

Goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann (Fulham, England) - Gave way to young keeper Glynn Thompson in the reserve match against Norwich and Thompsonís strong play earned him the substitutes role against Rovers.

Defender Gregg Berhalter (Crystal Palace, England) - Just back from Honduras, Berhalter did not dress for Crystal Palace which managed its first home win in four months 1-0 over Crewe, ending a run of six defeats in a row.

Forward Ante Razov (Racing de Ferrol, Spain) - After returning from Honduras, was one of three internationals who did not dress for a 1-1 draw with Extremadura.

Midfielder John OíBrien (Ajax, Netherlands) - Did not dress for 1-0 loss to NEC.

Also contributing to this report was Eyal Shabati in Israel

Senior correspondent Robert Wagman can be e-mailed at bobwagman@soccertimes.com. Christopher Courtney is an American living in Wuerzburg, Germany, where he follows the fortunes of American players in Europe. He can be contacted at yanksgermany@yahoo.com. Willy Calderon, an American living in Bristol, England, writes about soccer for various publications and netzines and can be contacted at willy@netcity.co.uk. Keith Richardson is an American living in Vilseck, Germany where he follows Americans playing in Germany. He can be e-mailed at footyfan1@yahoo.com. Mark Flannery is an American teaching English in France and can be e-mailed at flan.overseas@wanadoo.fr. Robert B. Lane, Jr., is an American residing in Barcelona from where he follows Spanish soccer. He can be e-mailed at lanedogg@excite.com.

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