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Read Landon Donovan’s Letter to Fans to Announce His Retirement From Soccer

MLS and USA soccer star Landon Donovan has announced his retirement from the professional sport. The all-time leading scorer in USMNT soccer history will retire at the end of this season.

Donovan published the following letter to explain his decision:

After careful deliberation and after many conversations with those closest to me, I have decided that this will be my last season as a professional soccer player.

I don’t write these words lightly and this day carries mixed emotions for me. I am sad to leave a profession that has brought me so much joy. I will miss all of the teammates who helped me create so many incredible memories on-the-field, and who I have shared many wonderful experiences with off-the-field. I will miss my coaches, at both the club and national team levels, who have helped me develop throughout my career and helped make me the player I am today. However, after spending half my life as a professional soccer player, I also am excited to begin a new chapter and pursue other opportunities that will challenge me and allow me to grow as a person.

There are so many people I want to thank who have inspired me, guided me and helped me on this incredible journey. I simply could not have accomplished what I did during my playing career without an overwhelming amount of support from my family, my friends and many others. I plan to express my gratitude to everyone in a more detailed manner at a later date; however, for now, I want to single out the fans. You are the lifeblood of this sport and, without you, none of us would be fortunate to call ourselves professional soccer players in MLS.

I feel incredibly blessed and lucky to have played a role in the remarkable growth of MLS and US Soccer during my playing career. And while my career as a player will soon be over, rest assured I will stay connected on many levels to the beautiful game.

As we enter a transformative time for the sport, I will do everything I can to help the continued growth of soccer in the United States. I look forward to making a difference, pursuing my passions and meeting all of you along the way in this next phase of my life.

With gratitude,


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  1. goatslookshifty

    August 7, 2014 at 6:52 pm

    Typical. Now he’ll go ‘retire’ to the EPL.

  2. Smokey Bacon

    August 7, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    Never quite lived up to his potential but a fine player nonetheless. Definitely one of the best this country has produced. Did things in his terms which is probably why he gets so much abuse. Haters gonna hate but he did his bit for the sport in this country. I enjoyed watching him play for the Earthquakes back in the day.

  3. ChillaxingOnCambodianBeach

    August 7, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    people canonizing him because he “stayed in mls for good of the league” bs. he stayed because it was easy.

  4. Justin

    August 7, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    Don’t understand the criticism here. Who do you clowns think you are to say it’s an “easy way out”. If you don’t like something anymore, you do something different. Pretty simple really – get over it.

  5. EDub

    August 7, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    Hahah … Landycakes gets so much criticism, but I give this guy respect for his statement.

    I hope he doesn’t turn all Bruce Arena and make a job of bashing JK.

  6. Frill Artist

    August 7, 2014 at 3:15 pm


  7. DaveG

    August 7, 2014 at 2:16 pm

    Sad to hear, always seems to want to take the easy way out, have to respect his talent to have played at some very good levels in Germany and England and of course in the USA, but I am left with lingering doubts about his commitment to being the best he could be at his chosen sport. Sounds harsh I know, but seems to be throwing all his toys out the pram this season.

  8. Vitamin Enhanced

    August 7, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    After not having pushed myself very hard over the course of my career I have decided MLS is too much of an effort for me as well.

    • Flyvanescence

      August 7, 2014 at 2:55 pm

      Jtm is that u?

      • Guy

        August 7, 2014 at 6:32 pm

        +1 😀

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