Landon Donovan Not Ready for Career to End


It doesn’t appear that Landon Donovan will pull a Brett Farve and un-retire, but on Friday Donovan mentioned “he doesn’t want it (his career) to end.” Yet, his legendary career will come to an end after his seventh MLS Cup Final appearance overall with or without winning his sixth MLS Cup.

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Donovan’s comments on Friday shouldn’t be shocking. He’s been playing soccer professionally at the club and international level  since 2000. Before that he was apart of the youth USMNT teams including the U-17, U-20, and U-23 teams. Donovan’s professional career on the club level began in Bundesliga in 1999. For two years, Donovan saw time on Bayer 04 Leverkusen II before moving up to the senior team from 2000-05. For three of those years from 2001-2004, Donovan was loaned to MLS side San Jose Earthquakes.

His four seasons with the Earthquakes led to Donovan wanting to continue his career in the States and MLS. Leverkusen respected his wishes and allowed him to return to MLS despite interest from European clubs. Due to then Earthquakes GM Alexi Lalas trading away his rights, Donovan was able to land with his hometown team, the LA Galaxy. From there, the rest is history and Donovan has been apart of a fair share of record-setting moments himself.

Due to a life filled with soccer, it’s understandable why Donovan is not ready for his soccer career to end; the fans aren’t either. Despite an estranged relationship with Jurgen Klinsmann, his final USMNT game in November showed the fans still love him. After being subbed off as a USMNT last time, he hung out with the American Outlaws and led the “I Believe” chant.

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As his final soccer game as a player quickly approaches, the attention is on Donovan. The hype is there, the cameras are ready to flash, the fans are looking forward to witness his last game in a Galaxy jersey, and despite competition against Sunday NFL games the television ratings should be high. This is all because of what he has accomplished as a USMNT and MLS player.

Before we know it, the 2014 MLS Cup Final will start and end. With that, Donovan will head into the California sunset, no matter if he comes away with sixth MLS Cup, as his decorated and successful career comes to an end; no one appears to be ready for his career to end, but all good things must come to and end. There’s no solidified option moving forward for Donovan, but don’t be surprised to see him involved in some capacity with soccer.

For now the fans, peers, the media, and Donovan, can reflect on his storied career with many memorable moments. The most famous arguably coming in the 2010 World Cup as he scored a late stoppage-time goal against Algeria to secure a spot for the USMNT in the knockout round.