Landon Donovan’s Legacy Doesn’t Depend on MLS Cup Final


American soccer legend Landon Donovan’s career will end come Sunday. The LA Galaxy are in pursuit of their fifth MLS Cup as the Revolution look to win their first. No matter what happens, Donovan’s legendary legacy and everything he has done of the game will not be tarnished by what occurs in the 2014 MLS Cup Final.

More from Los Angeles Galaxy

Yes, it would be great for Donovan’s career to have a story book ending. However, a loss on Sunday won’t take away from what Donovan has done. From the beginning of his career, Donovan has shined on the field and his success has helped transform and grow soccer within the United States. Without Donovan, it’s clear the popularity of US Soccer and MLS would not be the same.

As Donovan’s career comes to an end, the fans, media, and others in soccer circles have spent time reflecting on all he has accomplished. From setting the MLS regular season goal record, to currently five MLS Cups, to the countless MLS Best XI recognitions, Donovan will go out as the best American soccer player in history.

Donovan changed the landscape of Major League Soccer and US Soccer due to many reasons. For MLS, , his wish to play in the league instead of returning to Europe started to turn the league into a desirable location to play. While many pundits will argue that Donovan should have gone to Europe, Donovan accomplished much and staying in MLS didn’t restrict him and his career one bit.

More from Playing for 90

With Donovan taking off his cleats one final time and his future pursuits unknown at this time, many are wondering when the next Donovan will come along. It’s no secret MLS and US Soccer needs more players like Donovan within their teams. This starts within their youth development and its something MLS is spending more money on than ever before. While Don Garber and Jurgen Klinsmann will argue which system is best moving forward, development of young soccer players is important to the future success of the USMNT and MLS as a whole.

All in all, Donovan’s accomplishments and career has contributed to the growth of soccer within the United States at both the national and club level. It’s clear Donovan’s legacy will be remembered as the best American soccer player. This legendary legacy won’t change if Donovan wins a sixth MLS Cup or not overall or if he’s named MLS Cup MVP or not.