This Friday marks the final time Landon Donovan will strip on a USA jersey, as the 32-year-old will captain Jurgen Klinsmann’s side in a friendly match vs. Ecuador.
To mark this emotional occasion, U.S. Soccer has put together a touching tribute video for its all-time leader in both goals and assists. And it couldn’t be more perfect:
Here’s hoping No. 10 will go out with a goal or two to ring out his international career in style. We’ll miss you, Landon.
Third-string goalkeeper Jillian Loyden (R) with teammate Hope Solo (L) after the USA’s friendly vs Canada last May (USA Today)
Count fellow U.S. national team goalkeeper Jillian Loyden among those who do not believe Hope Solo should still be on the field with domestic violence charges hanging above her head.
In the fallout of the National Football League’s run of domestic violence scandals involving its players — Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice among them — some have voiced concern over a double standard as Solo, the national team’s starting goalkeeper, continues to play despite her own charges.
Loyden, in an editorial to USA Today, called for the benching of Solo until the legal process took its course.
"I believe that individuals are innocent until proven guilty, but in failing to take action against players’ behavior off the field, the league is not living up to its responsibilities.
U.S. Soccer needs to send the right message. They need to communicate that domestic violence is never okay and that it will not be tolerated.
Speaking out on these issues is not always easy. Hope Solo is my teammate and a personal mentor. But I cannot stand by as young fans receive the message that this behavior – even if the allegations proved to be inaccurate – can go unnoticed.”
Loyden, who also announced her retirement from the USWNT on Monday, has prioritized speaking out against domestic violence after being affected by personal tragedy. She started the Jillian Loyden Foundation after her sister Britton was murdered in 2012, allegedly at the hands of her former fiancé who is awaiting trial.
Solo was charged in Washington state with two counts of misdemeanor fourth-degree domestic-violence assault for allegedly striking her 17-year-old nephew and half-sister. Solo faces up to six months in jail if convicted at a trial scheduled in November.
The Women’s World Cup is fast approaching, and USA star Sydney Leroux is gearing up for the biggest tournament of her career.
And, as we’ve come to expect with Leroux, we’re sure she’ll document the journey. But if you’re like us and can’t wait to see what her the next adventure she posts about, here’s a look at some of her finest moments online.
Barack Obama has a lot on his plate at the moment, but the POTUS still found time to make good on his World Cup bet with his Belgian counterpart.
As you may remember, Belgium’s Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo tweeted Obama a friendly wager ahead of the two nations’ Round of 16 tie, with the loser having to send a case of the country’s finest beer to the other. Though he never tweeted back, Obama accepted. Secretary of Defense Tim Howard did everything he could, but Belgium eventually squeaked out the win in extra time.
Two months later, Obama finally paid up, sending the Belgian embassy in Washington D.C. a case of Sam Adams Boston Lager, as well as a case of the Boston brewery’s seasonal variety pack. Fancy! (The POTUS’ choice was also pointed: Sam Adams is America’s largest USA-owned craft brewery.)
— @NSCPress (@NSCPress)September 12, 2014
President Obama making good on lost Soccer World Cup with PM di Rupo:shipment of Sam Adams arrives at embassy. pic.twitter.com/2I0XodApTI— Embassy of Belgium (@BelgiumintheUSA)September 12, 2014
Attached was also a handwritten note from Obama personally, which ends with this great line: “As Americans, we’re always grateful for the partnership with our Belgian allies. Except on the pitch. See you in 2018.”
Sounds like a new bet!
Image provided by Getty
Landon Donovan’s announcement that he will retire at the end of the season was met with an outpouring of respect and adulation from his teammates, both past and present. Even his old Premier League club Everton checked in to send their best regards!
Check out some of the reaction on Twitter:
— tim howard (@TimHowardGK)August 7, 2014
. @landondonovan it’s been such an honor 2 play w & against you. Thanks for all you’ve done 4 our Country & 4 growing the sport we all love.— Nick Rimando (@NickRimando)August 7, 2014
— DeAndre Yedlin (@yedlinny)August 7, 2014
Landon Donovan will go down as the best player our country has produced. It will be fun watching others try and reach a bar that high.— Kyle Martino (@kylemartino)August 7, 2014
Proud to say I played with and against a US legend. #thanksLD— Michael Parkhurst (@MFparkhurst)August 7, 2014
@landondonovan it was a pleasure and honor to play with you and to see all your success. American soccer will miss you.— Brian Ching (@brianching)August 7, 2014
— Everton (@Everton)August 7, 2014
— San Jose Earthquakes (@SJEarthquakes)August 7, 2014
— LA Galaxy (@LAGalaxy)August 7, 2014
— Colorado Rapids (@ColoradoRapids)August 7, 2014
— herculez gomez (@herculezg)August 7, 2014
The pull of Cambodia must be strong. Congrats to an old friend (and the best player that America has ever produced!) on a great career. #LD— Jimmy Conrad (@JimmyConrad)August 7, 2014
— Sacha Kljestan (@SachaKljestan)August 7, 2014
Congratulations to Landon Donovan for an unbelievable career. You Put US soccer on the map and we are all very grateful. #LD10— Freddy Adu (@FreddyAdu)August 7, 2014
— Sunil Gulati (@sunilgulati)August 7, 2014
Good thing Landon Donovan picked a Thursday to announce his impending retirement. This gives us the perfect excuse for possibly the greatest Throwback Thursday post to date.
Get ready for some goosebumps. Here is Donovan’s classic winner vs Algeria that sealed the USA’s progress into the 2010 World Cup knockout stage, and the world’s reaction to it:
Sydney Leroux did not have a fun morning. The U.S. women’s soccer star watched in horror as her Audi was being towed on Wednesday, but not before she gave it one hell of a fight:
— Sydney Leroux (@sydneyleroux)August 6, 2014
She may have lost her car for a couple hours, but we’re glad she hasn’t lost her humor!
UPDATE: Leroux has revealed what she did wrong. Could’ve happened to anyone!
New US Soccer attendance record: 109,318!
Football is a cruel game.
Just when you start to believe, when you think the impossible just might be possible, your soul gets ripped right out of your body, and you remember you have to walk home in a full Captain America costume. The worst.
The United States men’s national team loss to Belgium in extra-time on Tuesday was the most painful kind of torture. For 90 minutes, we watched Tim Howard save the USA time and time again, putting forth arguably the greatest goalkeeping performance ever at a World Cup, only for it to all fall apart in extra-time. Just like four years ago.
But after the heartbreak, there was pride and hope; pride that the team wouldn’t ever, ever quit, and hope that in 2018, this team will be even stronger, and encourage even more belief. One team, one nation:
So proud of our team. So proud of our fans. So proud of our country !! Thanks to everyone for the amazing support !! #OneNationOneTeam— Jürgen Klinsmann (@J_Klinsmann)July 2, 2014
If you still have the mental and emotional capacity to do so, take a look at how America followed the USA’s thrilling 2-1 loss in the Round of 16:
THE GAME BEFORE THE GAME
The United States hadn’t even taken the field for warmups yet, when our blood pressure was already over 160. The heart-stopping finish between Argentina and Switzerland — Angel di Maria’s winner deep into extra time sent the Albiceleste through — should probably have told us that this was going to be a long, long day:
The Pope is most CERTAINLY an Argentine!!!!! Divine guidance saving #Argentina!— Ray Hudson (@RayHudson)July 1, 2014
Heard Messi made the game winning pass! That’s my type of play/er. Win, loss, draw u make the right play to help your team be successful
— LeBron James (@KingJames) July 1, 2014
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer)July 1, 2014
THE FIRST HALF
Oh NO! The first sign that the United States were in trouble:
Have to admit I’m a USA fan today— Wayne Rooney (@WayneRooney)July 1, 2014
— Pitbull (@pitbull)July 1, 2014
Anyone still wondering if soccer has “made it” in America?
— U.S. Soccer (@ussoccer)July 1, 2014
A pitch invader makes an appearance:
Alarming lack of security in this stadium on the field right now.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl)July 1, 2014
Landon Donovan, please get off the field.— TEDDY GOOALSEVELT (@edsbs)July 1, 2014
Purposeless pitch invasion. It was likely an England player.— Russell Brand (@rustyrockets)July 1, 2014
Game pauses briefly as Manuel Neuer runs onto the middle of the pitch.— Brian Phillips (@runofplay)July 1, 2014
More bad news, Fabian Johnson is hurt:
Not good. Fabian has been one of our best.— Rob Stone (@RobStoneONFOX)July 1, 2014
Huge moment for 20-year-old DeAndre Yedlin. Has to contain Hazard now. Johnson might have been most important US player this game.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl)July 1, 2014
USA you can have my hamstrings I don’t really need em anyway— Kayla Knapp (@KaylaKnappFOX)July 1, 2014
— Arizona Cardinals (@AZCardinals) July 1, 2014
Madeleine Albright with some wise words for the USA:
— Madeleine Albright (@madeleine)July 1, 2014
And England legend Gary Lineker perfectly summarizes the play thus far:
It’s open, yet tight. Some would say that’s the perfect combination.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker)July 1, 2014
THE SECOND HALF
All Belgium, all of the time:
Bend, don’t break. #USMNT— Alexi Lalas (@AlexiLalas)July 1, 2014
So, I guess that’s the difference between the Premier League and MLS— Matteo Bonetti (@TheCalcioGuy)July 1, 2014
The US is riding its luck. And your luck. And anyone else’s luck it can find.— Sam Borden (@SamBorden)July 1, 2014
— Andre Agassi (@AndreAgassi)July 1, 2014
TIM. HOWARD. #USA— FOX Sports (@FOXSports)July 1, 2014
Timmy Howard is like a warm blanket on a cold night— Mike Magee (@magee9)July 1, 2014
This…. pic.twitter.com/omL62XmJfj— Football Funnys (@FootballFunnys)July 1, 2014
Tim Howard could’ve saved my parents’ marriage.— Jensen Karp (@JensenClan88)July 1, 2014
— Squawka Football (@Squawka)July 1, 2014
Timmy!!!!!!— Brian McBride (@BMcBride20)July 1, 2014
Naming my baby girl Tim Howard.— Cupid Valentino (@mylestanzer)July 1, 2014
There’s nobody in Tim Howard’s mentions, because he’s blocking everyone.— Mike Prada (@MikePradaSBN)July 1, 2014
Someone changed the US Secretary of Defence on Wikipedia to Tim Howard. Fantastic. pic.twitter.com/haPrHWPLjx— Cam (@_camwba)July 1, 2014
So, which NHL team is going to sign Tim Howard in free agency?— FOX Sports Live (@FOXSportsLive)July 1, 2014
Howard is a beast! Let’s see some offense.— Joseph Montana (@JoeMontana)July 1, 2014