Seattle Sounders left back Joevin Jones returned to training on Thursday after leaving the club for personal reasons on Aug. 22 and joining the Trinidad and Tobago national team ahead of 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.
Jones missed Seattle’s matches against the Vancouver Whitecaps on Aug. 23 and Portland Timbers on Aug. 27.
“He understands where he is with me and with his teammates,” Head Coach Brian Schmetzer said of Jones. “He has to prove to them that he is absolutely fully committed up until Dec. 9 and that will dictate how he plays, when he plays, why he plays.”
Jones signed a pre-contract with German club SV Darmstadt 98 in late July and will depart for Europe following the 2017 MLS season. He leads the Sounders with 10 assists in 24 matches, and Schmetzer said that Jones is available for selection on Sunday at home against the LA Galaxy (6 p.m. PT; FS1, 107.7 The End, El Rey 1360 AM | TICKETS).
“A lot of guys on the team like Joevin,” Schmetzer said. “A lot of them believe that he’s a good guy. People make mistakes. There’s no getting around that. As far as I’m concerned, it’s put to bed. All the disciplinary stuff has been handled internally. It’s put to bed. He’s got to prove it on the field. I have faith in him, and I expect him to do his job.”