Landon Donovan. American Soccer. American Hero. I will always have a special place in my heart for this little man. He did something that seemed almost impossible. He basically made Americans care about soccer and did it on his own for over a decade. He represented American soccer internationally before Dempsey or Howard went over. Donovan received all the praise and all the scrutiny, and always handled it with class. He didn’t deserve to be treated the way he did, being cut before the World cup. But that in a way represented his whole career. Lando never got the respect he deserved from American fans or coaches. But Lando never complained. He just kept playing. He struggled in Europe, but he was the first high profile American to go play there.
Some people called him a coward and a failure when he left Europe and came back to the MLS. But he wasn’t. He just wanted the American fans to him the reception he deservd. In the prime of his career, when Donovan should’ve been in the spotlight, the LA Galaxy imported David Beckham and once again Lando took a backseat. In 2002 when the US reached the quarters, he was a hero, in 06 he was a goat when the US flopped, in 2010 he played hero once again, scoring the greatest goal in american history against Algeria in extra time. Soccer will never be huge in America, but that does’t mean that we shouldn’t wave goodbye to one of our biggest stars. The name Landon donovan will always be synonomus with US soccer, regardless of if its good or bad. Goodbye Lando. You will be missed.
May this forever live in infamy