A USMNT and American soccer legend, Landon Donovan got his start in a US uniform when he was just a teenager, back in 2000, and saw his international career stretch from that point until his World Cup exclusion a couple months ago.
After the MLS year is over, he’s done for good, retired from both club and presumably country, so let’s take a look back at some of his most fantastic moments representing the Stars and Stripes.
5. 2009 Confederations Cup Final--Donovan Goal Give U.S. 2-0 Lead Over Brazil
Facing a mighty Brazilian squad in the 2009 Confederations Cup final, Donovan spearheaded a counter attack, and gathering the ball near the edge of the box, he made an excellent cut to bury a left-footed finish past Julio Cesar. Brazil stormed back, and the U.S. ended up losing this game, 3-2, but nevertheless, Donovan was effective.
4. 2010 World Cup--Donovan Mounts Comeback vs. Slovenia
Down 2-0 to Slovenia in the 2010 World Cup group stage, Donovan struck a spectacular finish top-shelf, with legitimately no angle available to him. Michael Bradley scored a second goal, and the United States fought their way back for a 2-2 tie to avoid what would have been a disheartening loss.
3. 2002 World Cup--Young Donovan Blasts a Header for 2-0 Lead
Eddie Lewis delivered a great cross to Landon Donovan, who met it with his header for a textbook goal, and the U.S. beat 2-0 in the USMNT star’s first World Cup appearance when he was still basically a kid. There were special expectations for Donovan, even then.
2. 2014 World Cup Qualifiers--Mexico Winner
This moment was so special because it marked Landon Donovan’s last impact on the United States, since he wasn’t included in the World Cup roster. Donovan’s sliding, close-range shot iced the 2-0 victory over Mexico and qualified the U.S. for Brazil.
1. 2010 World Cup--Donovan Stoppage-Time Goal vs. Algeria
It was a great, fast counter attack against the tired legs of Algeria, and a good play to get the ball on net by Clint Dempsey. Donovan helped lead the development, trailed perfectly and sat in perfect position for the tap-in score, sending the U.S. past the group stage in dramatic fashion. It was vintage, clutch Donovan.