Landon Donovan’s Retirement Comes at Correct Time


Landon Donovan’s hat-trick and one assist powered the Los Angeles Galaxy attack in the team’s 5-0 win over Real Salt Lake. His performance showed the soccer legend still has something to prove and caused many to ask “why retire now, Landon?”. Well, Donovan’s retirement comes at the right time for the US soccer legend.

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Many times professional athletes are forced to retire prematurely due to career-ending injuries. At the same time, there have been others who have tried to play past their prime. Lastly, there have been others who retired and couldn’t stay away from the game, and ended up showing their first retirement was the right move.

Donovan falls under neither of those situations. He’s still in his prime as evidenced by Sunday’s stellar performance. It seems like no one is stopping the Galaxy in the MLS Playoffs, but anything is possible.

Hypothetically speaking, let’s say Donovan and the Galaxy win the franchise’s fifth MLS Cup Title. Donovan would be at the top as a champion. It’s always best to go out a champion instead of playing another season and not repeating last year’s success.

At the same time, it’s better for players to leave the game in their prime rather than way out of their prime. When the latter happens, fans and media members continually state that said player should retire. It becomes old fast and is highly annoying.

For Donovan, there is not much else for him to accomplish. He’s been apart of successful seasons and years at both the club and international levels. Donovan is arguably the best player to ever put on a USMNT or MLS team jersey.

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  • He’s helped MLS improve and become what it is today. He was the first high-caliber player to leave Europe and come player for an MLS side. He’s scored countless goals, assisted on many other plays, and broken a myriad of MLS records.

    Donovan is a fan-favorite and liked by the media. He’s healthy currently and going out of the sport he loves on his terms. The future is bright for the soccer legend as he’ll probably become the next talented soccer player turned soccer analyst. We witnessed this briefly during ESPN’s 2014 World Cup coverage.

    All in all, it would be nice if Donovan played another season in MLS. He’s brought much to the game and in return fans have witnessed a lot of stellar soccer moments. Yet, Donovan is retiring on his terms, under his own power, and ultimately is at peace with his decision.

    Soccer won’t be the same without Donovan on the pitch. However, it’s better that Donovan retires within his prime full-heartedly instead of continue to try to play one season too long.

    Before we know it, Donovan will be the next Alexi Lalas or Taylor Twellman covering soccer for a major network.