An international icon and superstar who was the cornerstone for several years for the United States national soccer team; with 13 years, three World Cup appearances and the most productive American soccer star in history looked as if it was time to hang up the red, white and blue jersey. This time last year, the speculation grew that the 31-year-old soccer stars’ international career was over.
Almost a year after his long break away from the national team – June of 2012 was his last match in a World Cup qualifier against Guatemala.
Ironically, Landon Donovan’s name was called up for a friendly match against Guatemala on July 5th, where Donovan scored twice as the US team won 6-0. This friendly match was the final tune-up for USA’s B squad before the 2013 Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) Gold Cup.
Donovan’s performance in the Gold Cup tournament was an amazing all-around performance, scoring five goals which tied him with teammate Chris Wondolowski and Gabriel Torres from Panama for the Golden Boot award. Donovan also ended the CONCACAF tournament with seven assists. His smart world-class skills was evident during the tournament as Donovan showed his incredible playmaking skills with his phenomenal accurate passes, great defensive awareness, and leadership is why Donovan earned and proved he still has what it takes for a spot on the U.S. first team.
It was a golden moment for Landon Donovan, as team USA took home their fifth CONCACAF Gold Cup title on Sunday with a 1-0 win against Panama. Donovan was also awarded the Golden Ball as the tournament’s most outstanding player.
Landon Donovan is the only American soccer player to reach 50 goals and 50 assists mark in his career. Throughout the years, Donovan has played at the highest-level with his powerful energy, leadership, unbelievable playmaking and creativity on the field is why he has become a staple to the increasing popularity of soccer in the United States.
With his terrific performance in the Gold Cup tournament is a reason why head coach Jurgen Klinsmann will want to keep Landon Donovan in the stars and stripes uniform on their road to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, next summer.