Like any other American soccer fan, I was ecstatic for the return of Landon Donovan. The man who retired far too soon was returning to the game to help out his club in need.
I applaud the charitable act, Landon.
The former USMNT star has made his first appearance back from his two year retirement on Sunday in the 4-2 Galaxy win against Orlando City. Donovan didn’t do too much in the roughly 10 minutes he was on the pitch, but fans were excited to have Captain America back on the field.
Unfortunately, the situation and the return of Donovan must be assessed in terms of progress for the MLS.
Yes, Landon Donovan is the most storied player in MLS history and the best USMNT player of all time. Relive the greatest moments of his career:
Unfortunately, his return to MLS fails to improve the status of MLS.
This move says to the world that if you’re retired for two years and you want to come back and play in the league, you can.
It shows that we regressed as a footballing nation and have become more of a laughing stock.
The fact that Landon Donovan can still compete after being out of professional football is a testament to the still low level of the league.
Less than a week of practice and Donovan is back on the pitch. In my mind, that’s unreal.
America, we have a problem.
Shit like this can’t happen if we want to even consider ourselves amongst the up and coming leagues of the world.
The best American talent is elsewhere and many don’t have plans to play in the retirement league. Higher levels of play can be found outside the United Sates and top talent is rightly being recruited overseas.
This is why Jurgen Klinsmann prefers European based players and why every national team fan should as well.
The MLS is not a league to produce players it’s a money making retirement home for ex-stars.