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Francisco Narbon thanks fans as he heads to surgery

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The S2 midfielder suffered a broken leg during the July 5 loss to Swope Park Rangers.

Lying on a hospital bed a few hours before surgery, Francisco Narbon thanked Seattle Sounders fans for their support after a horrific tackle in the S2 loss to Swope Park Rangers.

With studs-showing and a foot mid shin, the Swope player had no chance at winning the ball and every chance at severely injuring Narbon. Predictably, that’s exactly what happened.

The tackler eventually saw a red card. Narbon left the match with a broken leg.

S2 coach John Hutchinson made it clear just how much Tito meant to the young squad.

“The game kind of takes a side step away because we’ve lost a player for the season, a real good guy, good teammate to the players. They all called him ‘Papa’ because they all looked up to him,” Hutch said postgame. “He’s one of our older players at 23 years old. It’s just devastating. You’ve seen the boys’ faces, when they went over they knew what happened to him. It was pretty real for them.

“For the majority of my squad, it was their first time seeing someone break their leg on the park. All the boys are devastated for Tito. The coaching staff are hurting. For me, the game just takes a back seat today. The result is not what we wanted. We played OK in patches. We tried to create, we tried to go for it. But you could see they were just a little bit off tonight after Tito went down. Their first goal kind of just came against the run of play. And then after it happened, you just kind of wish take them all off and move on to Sunday.”

Narbon’s long road recovering starts as soon as surgery ends. He’ll have the support of Sounders and Panamanians around the world.