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'Game over' for Heath Pearce
by Paul Kennedy, April 14th, 2009 7AM
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[AMERICANS ABROAD] Heath Pearce, the starting U.S. left back for the first two games of the final round of World Cup 2010 qualifying, has been dropped from German Second Division club Hansa Rostock's first team by Coach Andreas Zachhuber "for performance reasons."

According to the the German newspaper Bild, Pearce met with Zachhuber and Hansa general manager Rene Rydlewicz and got the news at a meeting early Monday morning.

Bild's summary of the meeting: "Game over für Pearce."

"I said on arriving five months ago," added Zachhuber," that everybody gets a chance to jump on my train. He just didn't cut it."

Pearce will play for Hansa Rostock II, its amateur team, which plays in the Regionalliga North.

According to Bild, problems arose when Pearce said he had a thigh problem right before Thursday's game against Greuther Fuerth game, which Hansa, won, 1-0. That didn't go over well with Zachhuber, who has asked for total commitment from his players.

The Fuerth game was a must-win game in Hansa's battle to avoid relegation. It is tied with FC Ingolstadt for 16th place, one point behind VfL Osnabrueck in the 18-team Second Division. The bottom three teams go down.

Pearce had appeared in the previous three Hansa games -- his only appearances since the winter break. He has played in 12 Second Division games this season after appearing in 19 First Division games with Hansa in 2007-08.

He previously played for FC Nordsjaelland (2005-07) in Denmark.

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