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Report: Landon Donovan about to extend LA Galaxy deal

Aug 27, 2013, 3:50 PM EDT

Donovan of L.A. Galaxy controls the ball against Giovinco of Juventus during soccer match in Los Angeles Reuters

Despite some low-frequency signals recently that his future may lie elsewhere, LA Galaxy star Landon Donovan will apparently finish his career in the United States with Major League Soccer after all.’s Grant Wahl says the 31-year-old Galaxy star has reached agreement on a new, multi-year deal with the two-time defending league champs.

Here’s why this is significant, even beyond competitive implications for the ongoing season, as this eliminates any chance (small as it was) of Donovan moving in the current transfer window and keeps his head focused squarely on driving Galaxy attempts to become the first MLS club with three consecutive MLS titles.

  • While this does not ensure Donovan will remain in MLS through the duration of his playing days, it certainly becomes the obvious likelihood. At 31, this could be Donovan’s final contract. Considering that he contemplated retirement just a few months ago, Donovan seems unlikely to be the guy who keeps pushing through the sprains and strains and taxing plane trips into his late-30s.
  • Donovan could still move overseas at some point, although his 14-year professional history tells how unlikely that is. Still, as with the recent Omar Gonzalez deal, this secures the Galaxy’s ability to make a buck off any move. Otherwise, Donovan could have moved in the winter on a free transfer.
  • This means Donovan will almost certainly become Major League Soccer’s all-time leading scorer.
  • Don’t forget, Donovan is currently 20 assists short of that all-time league record, as well. If he holds both, he could be the only player ever to do so … and would likely hold that distinction for a very long time.

(MORE: Donovan creeps ever closer to MLS scoring record)

There is one more reason why this will be an important moment for Major League Soccer, once it becomes official. We’ll get into that one a bit later at ProSoccerTalk.

  1. dfstell - Aug 27, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    Hmmm….interesting. I guess I’m happy to see him stay, but also a little surprised that the Galaxy won’t have another “big spalsh” DP signing. It’s a little hard to imagine that Robbie Keane arrived two years ago and it might be another 2-3 years before the Galaxy get to make another big unveiling? Doesn’t that seem weird? Not saying that signing Donovan isn’t a smart move, it’s just hard to imagine the Galaxy going 4-5 years between major new signings. Not very superclub-like.

    I guess the current CBA does expire in the spring of 2015, so next season is the last to be played under this CBA. Hard to imagine that the new CBA won’t include an expansion of the DP rule. Maybe the Galaxy just assume that by the time we get to the 2015 season, there will be a much bigger salary cap and 5-6 DP slots?

  2. joeyt360 - Aug 27, 2013 at 4:04 PM

    Remember that Tim Lieweke has gone to Toronto. I think that has something to do with the shift in strategy.

  3. mdac1012 - Aug 27, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    All the nonsense about LD going overseas was just that, nonsense. I will be interested to see what the exact numbers are when they begin to leak out, but its probably in the ballpark of Dempsey money. He wasn’t going to get a multi year deal at that kind of money from any team in Europe worth leaving the Galaxy for.

    If his agent was able to use the talk of overseas teams being interested in LD to leverage MLS and the Galaxy for more $$, then good for him.

  4. alqj24 - Aug 27, 2013 at 5:35 PM

    Definitely feels weird that Galaxy won’t go after a DP. But as the point was brought up, maybe soon there’ll be an extension of how many DP a team can have. Anyways, good to see Donovan will stick around here. There was always the risk that in Europe he wouldn’t play nearly as much.

  5. bellerophon30 - Aug 27, 2013 at 5:39 PM

    Good move for Landon, and props for ultimately bucking the trend and doing what he wants, rather than what’s expected of him. More than ever, he’s the face of MLS.

  6. bayoor75 - Aug 28, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    Ha ha ha…I told you so!!! LD isn’t going anywhere. There are no clubs in Europe that will pay him what he makes in the US. No clubs in Europe will fork out a transfer fee for a 30 year old American who has largely failed in Europe. LD is smart and he knows this…he also knows that he will not be able to lock down a starting spot in any of the big clubs in Europe…maybe mid-table clubs, but not the top ones.

    LD and Omar Gonzalez are both incredible by MLS standards, but they are just above average in Europe!

    Funny how one commenter here said what club will pay big money to buy Ronaldo because he’s 29. But the same commenter argued that LD is worth the big bucks.

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