Shalrie Joseph, an invaluable player for the New England Revolution since 2003, has left the club indefinitely for what Michael Burns, vice president of player personnel, says is "a completely personal matter, non soccer-related. He asked for some time on a personal matter and it was granted, and it would be speculation to say how long he will be gone.’’
Ron Waxman, Joseph’s agent, confirmed the absence is not related to contract or injury issues. The team captain has missed four games with a hip flexor strain. “It’s a little difficult because this just came about,’’ Burns said. “The [transfer] window has closed and it’s not going to be reopened. Teams get no roster relief on a personal matter, so it’s difficult. If there were a definite time frame on it — but we’re getting into hypotheticals — if there were an extended period of time, more than six games, we could get roster relief but not [salary] cap relief.
“Our hands are tied on replacing the roster spot. He’s a key guy for us, no doubt. On the field, he’s a leader and a very important player for the team. But we can’t dwell on the fact we don’t have him. Guys are going to have to step up until he gets back. We have guys who are getting the opportunity to play who otherwise would not have that opportunity.’’