US midfielder Jermaine Jones has broken nose, as expected, but won't wear mask


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SAO PAULO — U.S. midfielder Jermaine Jones has a broken nose after Thursday's game against Germany, but remains available to play in the round of 16 against Belgium on Tuesday in Salvador.

U.S. Soccer Federation spokesman Michael Kammarman said Friday that Jones and fellow midfielder Alejandro Bedoya each were checked on the field for concussion symptoms during the 1-0 loss at Recife following their second-half collision, and three more times since then. There were no issues for either player so far.

The team arrived back to its Sao Paulo hotel at 11 p.m. Thursday night, and Bedoya and Jones were examined again Friday morning.

Jones won't wear a protective mask and the fracture hasn't caused discoloration in the area.

"I don't remember really what happened. I went for a header," Jones said. "The feeling was that it was broken."

Kammarman added that Jones' injury doesn't appear serious, as there is no visible bruising of the like forward Clint Dempsey had when he broke his nose in the Ghana game.

"He looks unaffected. You can't even see any discoloration," Kammarman said. "So it appears to be a minor fracture. He is fine, he's available to play."

Forward Jozy Altidore's status for the knockout stage remains unclear, though he is making positive progress since straining his left hamstring in the first half of the Americans' opening win against Ghana on June 16. He ran at a good pace around the field without any signs of pain under sunny skies at Sao Paulo Futebol Clube on Friday morning and did some stretching on the sideline with the assistance of the training staff. He has run several times now without further problems.

"We are very optimistic. Every day is a big step forward with Jozy," coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. "It's 11 days now and it's looking better every day, so we are optimistic we have him being a part of the Belgium game."

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