Photo by John Todd/ISIPhotos.com
About four months ago Landon Donovan sent the American soccer community buzzing when he gave the first clear-cut evidence that maybe, just maybe, he was seriously considering retirement sooner rather than later. His latest interview reveals that those earlier statements were far from a passing faze.
In an interview with ESPN, Donovan admitted to still struggling with motivation, and revealed that he is still at a point where his going through some serious soul-searching and thinking about life after soccer.
“I have always tried to find the point where I know this is a job but where I still enjoy it,” Donovan told ESPN. “I know I have to enjoy it so I can really play my best or else I can become a detriment to my team.”
Donovan also touched the likelihood of him playing in the 2014 World Cup, which would be his fourth World Cup.
“I don’t have the answer to that,” Donovan told ESPN. “There are a lot of moving pieces: Will I be playing, period? Will I be part of the team? Will I be good enough to be wanted?
“If I had to guess I would say it is 50-50. I will have more clarity after I take a break.”
Based on Donovan’s latest comments, it appears more and more unlikely that he will be heading to Everton on loan this winter, but he does leave the door open for a return to Goodison Park. With just one year remaining on his current MLS contract after 2012, Donovan could make one last move to Europe, assuming the motivation and desire is there.
While Donovan’s comments back in May came as a bit of a shock, his latest interview will only serve to add to a growing realization that the countdown to the end of Donovan’s career is coming sooner than most would have imagined even just 16 months ago, when he was starring in the 2010 World Cup.
Give Donovan’s ESPN interview a read and let us know what you think? Do you see Donovan being a key member of the U.S. National team much longer? Are you hoping he is still on the team in 2012, or are you ready for the next generation to step in so Donovan can move on to the next chapter in his life?
Share your thoughts below.