7
Aug

Soccer community reacts to Landon Donovan’s retirement

image

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:

29
Jul

Carles Puyol seems to be enjoying his retirement so far

If you ever wondered what retired professional soccer players do when they go on vacation with their stunning WAGs, maybe these posts from Carles Puyol’s girlfriend Vanesa Lorenzo will shed some light.

Apparently, some highly advanced hotel room yoga is on the agenda:

Perfect balance…

OK, now we’re slowly approaching Sarah Marshall-Aldous Snow territory…. (Come on, you can see it!)

Enjoy retirement, Carles! We’re sure you will.

15
Mar

Brazil legend Rivaldo retires from football

image

Rivaldo, one of the greatest midfielders of our generation and a living Brazilian legend, announced his retirement from football via Instagram Saturday:image

During his 24-year career, Rivaldo won the 2002 World Cup, the 2003 Champions League with AC Milan, and two La Liga titles with Barcelona, among many other accolades. He received the Ballon d’Or in 1999 and was voted into two World Cup all-star teams (1998 and 2002).

We invite you now to join us and take a moment to reminisce on Rivaldo’s brilliance. Perhaps his greatest goal came in 2001, on the final day of the La Liga season. Barcelona needed to beat Valencia in order to qualify for next year’s Champions League. Two minutes from time, with the match tied 2-2, Rivaldo stepped up:

And if that’s not enough for you, here are a lot more Rivaldo highlights:

Tchau, legend!

7
Nov

Uruguayan keeper retires after chopping off four of his fingers

imageUruguayan keeper Juan Obelar was forced to retire from football after a horrendous accident left him with only a thumb on his left hand. The 34-year-old chopped off four of his fingers while using a wood-cutting machine.

From the Daily Mail:

I feel so awful, this is the most horrendous thing that has ever happened to me. It is a very painful moment.

I was doing a few things for my house, putting wood through a plane and the next thing I know the machine ripped off four fingers.

I was on my own, I didn’t have help from anyone and the only digit I had left was my thumb.

Obelar, who last featured for Montevideo-based Penarol, had been out of a team and planned to attempt a comeback in January. Obviously, those plans have now been scrapped. Obelar said he will receive surgery to try to reconstruct his hand, but there is no way his fingers can be reattached. We hope you get well soon, Juan!

imageGetty Images via Daily Mail

It’s not the first unusual domestic accident that has left soccer players on the sidelines, although none have been as horrific as Obelar’s.

Man United defender Rio Ferdinand once suffered a tendon strain by simply watching television, and Man City striker Sergio Aguero injured his foot last year while riding his son’s mini-motocross bike.  AC Milan legend Alessandro Nesta takes the cake, though. He once missed a month of action after needing surgery for rupturing tendons in his thumb. The reason? A marathon session on the PlayStation!

5
Jun

Michael Ballack bids farewell in star-studded retirement match

image

Michael Ballack drew 45,000 fans and some of the soccer world’s biggest stars (past and present) for his ceremonial retirement match in Leipzig on Wednesday.

Ballack, Germany’s national team captain for many years including during the 2006 World Cup, scored a hat-trick in the match, which featured high-profile coaches, former teammates and opponents.

image

Team “Ballack & Friends” consisted of German stars such as Miroslav Klose, Ulf Kirsten, Philipp Lahm and even Formula 1 legend Michael Schumacher, while the “World XI” consisted of legends such as Lothar Mattheus, Pavel Nedved, and Ballack’s former Chelsea teammates Didier Drogba and Andriy Shevchenko.

The coaches? Oh, just his former bosses Jose Mourinho and Rudi Voller.

image

With all those stars under one roof, it was Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker, of all people, who laid down the move of the night, dispossessing Drobga with this luscious spin move! What!?

17
May

Beckham to wear commemorative boots in final home match

image

Image: David Beckham

Style has never been a problem for David Beckham.

On the eve of his final home match as a professional soccer player, Beckham announced he will be lacing up these custom boots for Paris Saint-Germain’s match against Brestois. He has partnered up with adidas to create these and it’s clear that they are carrying some signature Beckham style.

Beckham announced his decision on Facebook stating:

I wanted to show the passion I had playing for my country and the pride that gave me during my career. You also see the names of Victoria and the kids which have always been there on my boots.”

image

A touching tribute from a true family man.

13
May

Stoke players organize “retirement gift” for Owen

image

Stoke City’s Michael Owen, who has announced his retirement at the end of the season, found his car egged by teammates after Sunday’s game against Tottenham.

Owen already came up with a list of primary suspects, to whom he tweeted out this warning:

At least Owen’s true home team came up with a more appropriate and touching retirement gift:

Awwwwww.

12
May

Mark van Bommel fittingly sent off in last game of career

Never has there been a more appropriate finish to a career than Mark van Bommel’s.

The Dutchman’s 20-year professional career came to a close after his PSV side fell to FC Twente 3-1. The tough midfielder, known for his strong tackles, received a red card in the 71st minute after a vicious challenge on Duasn Tadic’s ankle. It’s hard to imagine van Bommel’s exit from the game any other way — well, other than with a win.

We’re thankful this tackling machine left us with such an emphatic exclamation mark on a fantastic career.