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Donovan will pass on loan move to stay with Galaxy

Landon Donovan 3 (

Los Angeles Galaxy and U.S. men's national team star Landon Donovan will not be going on loan this winter, he and the Galaxy announced on Tuesday.

“While I enjoyed my time at Everton last season and still appreciate all the support their fans have given me, I feel that it is important to continue to rest and recover this offseason as opposed to going on loan,” Donovan said. “I never considered being loaned to a club other than Everton, but I have been playing nearly non-stop for the past two years and I believe that this decision will allow me to perform at my best for the Galaxy and the National Team throughout the upcoming year.

"I look forward to re-joining my Galaxy teammates for the start of preseason training next month and beginning our quest for another MLS Cup championship.”

Donovan went on loan to Everton last winter, but will pass on a chance to return to Europe this off-season, choosing instead to stay with the Galaxy heading into the 2011 season.

What do you think of this development?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. At 28 I think the days of Donovan being considered a good “deal” for an EPL team are dwindling. He may be an option for a mid-tier team, but certainly nobody like Chelsea, ManU, Tottenham, etc. Having said that, he’s going to be a very expensive purchase for the mid-tier clubs, such as an Everton or Fulham, because he’s much more valuable to MLS than them, and also I think at the end of the day the numbers just don’t crunch out for EPL teams who’s wallets have gotten tight in the last few years anyway.

    If Donovan really WANTED to go to the EPL, he wouldn’t have signed the three-year contract extension with the Galaxy. It was a move that may have made him “unbuyable.”

  2. I disagree. 4 years ago I would say he needed to move. Maybe even 2 years ago. But we have seen Donovan and what he can do in the EPL, he was great. And guess what, “the national team benefitting from his presence”? The team has been benefitting from him for the last 8 years, and he’s been in the MLS. We are talking about a LOAN here. The Nats WILL NOT benefit from a Donovan loan if he gets tired, beat up, or possibly injured. As an earlier post mentioned, the loan is a risk to the player, who does so hoping to make a breakthrough, Donovan has done that, and deserves to be bought. And if he still doesn’t get bought, the Nats at this point are ok without Donovan risking his body just for a couple more weeks to play in the EPL. Those few weeks won’t make him a better player at this point. A full transfer however, is worth it.

  3. Uh…not so fast there Nicole. I’m not disparaging Landon as he really impressed me..but Clint scored against England..Donovan scored again Slovenia..and they both scored (though Dempsey’s was incorrectly ruled offside). Oh and Deuce drew the PK against Ghana that Landon was able to slot home. I would say they were Equally as Big for the team. I’m one of Clint’s biggest fans…but all this LD vs CD is nonsense

  4. there hasn’t been a mention of a deal to buy him either here int he US, or in the UK. If this had been a deal to buy him, we would have heard about it. He turned down a loan move, not an offer to buy

  5. I bet they would know about him if he scored 45 goals for his national team. Not to mention an equal number of assists. And I bet they would know about him if he scored 5 goals in world cups….with one goal in particular being a goal for the ages scored in stoppage time, that propelled their team to win their group for the first time ever.

    LD has been the most prolific attacking player ever produced by the USA..and that’s without regard to where he plays his club ball.

  6. Cuz I’ve come across someone on the “inside” is how I know. Landon has been talking with them for a loooooong time. And he was indeed ready to sign over the summer.

    Did you know this: the loan figure for Landon set by MLS this time around was $400,000 per game. That’s per game.

  7. As much fun as it was to watch him this past winter pwning Ashley Cole and tearing it up at Everton, as a Galaxy, Landon and USMNT fan, the short-term loan is a high risk/low reward proposition. The ideal scenario is a permanent transfer, but I don’t think it would be so terrible for Landon to rest up, be ready for the MLS season and Gold Cup, and try to get sold after making one last run at the title with Becks and JPA. I will lament not being able to set my alarm and wake up bright and early to watch LD running around Goodison next month, but it will be nice to see him energized and healthy from my seat at the HDC next fall during the MLS playoffs.

    Landon’s MLS situation is much more favorable than others who have gone to Europe; he makes $$$, lives on the beach, has a nice amount of local celebrity and is a fixture in the community here…no offense to their fans, but he’s not knocking around in a 2 bedroom apartment in Columbus. The Everton experience was awesome and I’d love to see him return, but for 10 weeks after the year he had seems counterproductive.

  8. what I don’t understand is the logic that it is good for US Soccer.

    IMHO, the way it is good for US soccer is as follows:

    1. that’s where the big money is (name one MLS club that can offer contracts as lucrative as Real Madrid or AC Milan or even FC Braga for that matter). An “average” UEFA-er makes a heck of a lot more money than an average MLS-er. The more money these athletes make, the more attractive the sport is to young athletes and the more money retired athletes will have to “give back” in the form of scholarships, sports camps and development programs (Brad Friedel has a great program in Ohio, and he ain’t even done yet)

    2. Money aside, the Prestige Leagues are in England, Spain, Italy and Germany, not to mention the Champions League and Europa Cup. Just like folks in Japan are proud of their baseball players who come to MLB and European basketball fans follow their countrymen in the NBA, and even Scandinavian and Russian hockey fans follow NHL, having US players in UEFA is a level of “street cred” that we simply cannot generate here.

    3. Most importantly, in terms of creating players that can compete in internationally, the level of play in terms of speed, pace and technicality (i.e. passing accuracy, tactics) in Italy, England, Spain, Germany, Portugal, France, Belgium, Turkey etc., is higher. If we want our players to be able to compete at that level they need to be immersed in it, nit just exposed to it on FIFA dates.

    I would argue that it’s not Eurosnobbery to say so, but it is borderline xenophobia to think otherwise. We have a lot to be proud of and we get better in the soccer world every day, but when accounting all of these elements it’s hard to see how the best environment for a professional footballer isn’t Europe. LD has been an exception, not the rule.

  9. Phil…a man of reason…thank you.

    Nicole, look, I don’t know where you are getting your facts but you’re making a lot of assumptions and just passing them off as facts…do you work for Richard motzkins? How do you know that this was only a short term loan and that there were not Offers from everton and elsewhere to buy him? And dclee, you just don’t get it bro, what would you give to be in ld’s shoes? To have the talent and ability that he has? To have the opportunity to play in one of the best leagues in the world…to take his game to new levels and be a better player for the Nats, and a more famous player around the world? To tell american kids that soccer players are just as big of superstars in the world as lebron James and Kobe Bryant…
    This is a devastating decision for me as a huge fan of this guy…and I stand by my original assertion, it’s a reflection of his character and part of the reason he’ll never be as great as he could have been….

  10. I think he’ll leave Galaxy within the next year or two. Whenever his contracts expires or the right European team buys him, he’s gone. This is not over, we’ll here more about this in a year or two. The EPL teams that want him, will realize they have to buy him, if they want him. Let’s not jump to conclusions so fast. It’s NOT OVER.

  11. This is what I don’t get. HOw does turning down another 10-week loan (his 3rd in 3 years, by the way) show a lack of ambition? He wanted to be bought – not go out on loan. Since they didn’t buy, why should he risk his health, his body for a team that’s not willing to put the money on the table?

    He was ready to go permanent to them over the summer, but they didn’t have enough money to meet MLS demands. With him turning down a loan, he’s put the ball back in their court: you want me, buy me.

  12. I would have loved to see Donovan make either a loan or permanent move back to Everton. He excelled there, and they loved having him. I have to wonder if he isn’t being held back by staying in the U.S.

    That said, if the man says he needs a break, then so be it! He has more than earned it.

  13. One more thing: WHERE WAS DONOVAN GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY TO MOVE TO ENGLAND AND HE TURNED IT DOWN? This is a loan – Everton know what he can do…all they have to do is BUY HIM. He’s not turning down a permanent move; he’s passing on being a rent-a-player, where he takes all the risk for little reward (shouts of USA You Must Stay – but no permanent contract). You love you some Dempsey, and I do too, but it was Donovan who came up bigger for the team at the World Cup and that’s a fact.

  14. This is great for MLS; this and younger players like Agudelo getting time. Is anyone else-well, at least Red Bull fans-excited to see Agudelo next year on that team? The truth is, US soccer needs both the Donovans and the Dempseys in order to thrive. MLS needs at least a couple Donovans to give fans an American and known quality to watch. If you’re a fan of US soccer, you should at least recognize the necessity of a quality national league.

  15. WORD UP.

    Still wish we had beat Ghana. Beating Slovenia would have changed things in that match, even with Clark in the starting lineup.

    big eff to the ref.

  16. I think this was the right decision for LDo. He looked completely gassed towards the end of the past MLS season. The guy deserves a break and a chance to let his motor rest. He’s not a teenager anymore.

  17. if it wasn’t going to be an end of season loan then honestly what is the point. He needs to be true to himself and true to the team willing to pay him.

    excellent point alex

  18. Tim Cahill is a legit star for Everton and has been for years. Has that really done all that much for the game in Australia? I mean, he may have elevated interest a bit there, but no one elsewhere considers Australia a powerhouse national team or a good league because it has a star player or two playing for a mid-level EPL team and I doubt he has converted the Australian Rules football fans and rugby fans to soccer either. I’ve never really understood the argument that Donovan needs to play there for “us.” Is it because we have an inferiority complex about soccer and we want Europeans to like and respect us? Why? It’s not like people in the US give a hoot about Spanish basketball because of Pau Gasol or Japanese baseball because of Ishiro.

  19. Passing on a 10-week loan does not prove anything about Landon’s ambition or lack thereof. It just sends the message: buy me or leave me alone. Last year, Landon was a revelation for Everton. There is nothing more he can prove to them. All going out on another short loan will do is wear out Landon, put him at risk for injury. He’s putting it all on the line, with Everton not risking anything. It’s time Everton risk something: put up or shut up, Blues. Hand over the money and LD will come.

    They wanted to buy him this summer, but he was too expensive. LD wanted to go. Everton need to just fork it over.

  20. I never believe any of this talk. So common in soccer. Guys always “commit to their team” as a means to get the best deal possible.

    I will believe this when the January window is closed and no deal has been made.

  21. Well, he is only the best American field player of his generation, perhaps ever. Does this mean he will be the best in 20 years? Hopefully not, if the US continues to improve. If the question “what if” arises, it will arise about “what if he stayed there at 20; it will not be what if returned there at 28.” He has played well in multiple World Cups, and the idea that the best US so far has more to prove seems a bit silly. He isn’t Messi, nor would he have been had he stayed in Europe.

  22. No, it’s not that he’s the poster boy for MLS. It’s those 45 goals he’s scored for the Nats. NBD or anything.

    And I’m not saying we have emerged as a powerhouse in terms of producing players for European teams, but we have guys like Dempsey, Holden, Bradley, Edu, Howard, and Friedel who have gained a ton of international recognition as being incredibly valuable to their teams. Plus you have a bunch of guys like Feilhaber and DIskerud playing in the Scandinavian leagues. We have plenty of guys in Europe, and have certainly made a name for ourself. Sure, it’d be nice to establish our players as quality in the eyes of the top European leagues, but Donovan probably isn’t the right guy to do so. McBride and Reyna set the standard for Americans in Europe, and Dempsey and Holden are picking up where they left off. Also, Bradley has emerged as one of the best midfielders in the Bundesliga and Edu has become a commodity for Rangers. A lot of people don’t like Bradley, but it is impossible to deny that he is our best central midfielder by a mile and that he is integral for Moenchengladbach to have any sort of success.

  23. My opinion of LD has evolved tremendously over the last year. I used to think it was MLS/Garber/Galaxy that was keeping him from playing overseas, and that this was an example to prospective American soccer stars that they should get out of MLS as soon as possible, lest they be held ransom like Donovan.

    I no longer believe this. More likely, I think LD simply does not have the drive and desire like Dempsey, Holden, etc., to play overseas and prove himself a first-rate footballer.

    Having said that, he’s still my favorite American footballer.(when he’s not playing the Sounders of course)

  24. But how does going out on yet another short-term loan solve the problem you’re presenting? It doesn’t. It’s still 10 weeks and you’re back. These teams (Everton) need to just buy him; don’t use him up and then send him back. 10-week loans..the risk is all on the player. Everton need to take the risk, put the money on the line and buy him permanent.

  25. Interesting how many people actually buy this.

    My theory is Garber put a muzzle and a leash on Donovan and gave him a chance to put a nice spin on it.

    He ain’t getting any younger, but then again, maybe the brothers of the girl he almost got preggers are after him for besmirching the family honor.

    I personally have a very hard time seeing how you can pass up top flight soccer for the likes of MLS. But you can actually count me amongst the Galaxy fans eager to see him link up with Angel next season.

    If there’s one thing we know about Donovan, for him it is not all about the soccer– which I kind of respect.

    As an LA guy myself I can certainly see the merits of being able to surf, train, hang out with good friends, and say nighty night to a hot wife all in the same day.

    But doesn’t he have like 7 more years to do all that in MLS?

  26. I dunno rooney has had time off, so has lampard and terry and ferdinand and the list goes on… Oh wait because of injuries you say? oh? so maybe they should have taken a break. EPL my a**, thats why there players can’t make it through an entire season. This non move says nothing about his desires, everton are not the same team they where last year and if it wasn’t going to be an end of season loan then honestly what is the point. He needs to be true to himself and true to the team willing to pay him.

  27. Very smart move for him.

    If any team out there wants him – Everton, I’m looking at you – then fork out the money and buy him permanently. This rent-a-player for 10 weeks does nothing but wear the player down.

    Either put up the money or leave him alone.

  28. “I believe that this decision will allow me to perform at my best for the Galaxy and the National Team throughout the upcoming year.” -Donovan

    – – –

    Absolute leadership for the Galaxy in his reasoning

    He’ll continue to be the face of our league and a great example of talent within MLS and coming up through the ranks.

    Hopefully the self-proclaimed ambassador of our league nd former superstar that is in his mid-thirties………can follow suit now and do the same.

  29. Landon needs the rest, that much seems certain. If my memory is correct, he’s done pretty well in avoiding injury but needn’t push his luck.

    But Landon needs to play somewhere better than the MLS if he is to help the US team progress.


    The best US players’ skills and physical abilities reach a high level, but our collective reading of the game is not good enough, and many of the guys we have who read it better are picking that up overseas. The MLS game is… different.

    And even all top club football is not on parity

    Look at the Spanish team (which is basically Barcelona) and tell me how you will compete with that kind of passing and movement and awareness if you are playing the MLS style soccer. We need our best guys in the top club teams in the world, the ones that play dynamic football.

    Yes I am an MLS fan, but I am not blind

  30. as for your points on the national team, spot on. the team as a whole will benefit from his presence in the EPL. he is and has been for several years the best player in MLS, so how will staying there help him. i really don’t see teams splashing a lot of money on him in a year’s time, so this is really his last chance to move out of MLS(that is, if he got a long term offer out of this), so he will stagnate at his current talent level in MLS rather than challenge himself against the world’s best week in and week out. it’s a shame for us as fans and the national team as a whole that he will spend the prime of his career in MLS

  31. Well my calmer post didn’t make it, perhaps Ives has had enough of me. Bottom line was we should have done better this summer given the opportunity that we had. Of course we arent a team expected to make deep runs, but it was there for the taking, and in my opinion, bob Bradley let us down w/ his squad selection in the Ghana match. So yes, we had a great run and an incredible moment in the Algeria game, but we failed at taking our opportunity to get to the semis…and we failed to truly capture the American non-soccer sports fan who may have otherwise tuned in if we had gone deeper.
    Don’t tell me to get a life for getting fired up about this…you should have the passion and knowledge of the game that i have…
    That said…Landon can do whatever he wants, I just think he is passing uP a massive opportunity for himself and the game in this country…and this is it, he’s probably not going to get another chance. That’s my .02…”take it or leave it”‘ ha

  32. i’m pissed because as a fan, there was nothing more exciting than watching him and the toffees tear it up against the best in the prem.
    we as fans are very invested in this sport, therefore, we have a right to be pissed. im not necessarily pissed at Donovan, because he can do whatever he wants, i’m just pissed that we won’t get to watch him do it all over again

  33. I guess in my eyes, his performances at the ’09 Confed Cup, ’10 World Cup and his 3 month loan at Everton showed me that he was more than capable of succeeding in a top European league.

  34. great, he gets to spend the prime of his career stagnating in a league where he has been the best player for years and won’t get any better than he already is. awesome!

  35. Um… this summer’s world cup was a success.

    Perhaps its you who needs to ‘wake up’.

    Our ‘stars’ played for Everton, Fulham, Rangers, Borussia Monchengladbach — and sat on the bench at Milan. There is not a single ‘last 16 champions league’ player among the LOT of them.

    Finishing 12th at the world cup is basically where we should have finished. It’d have been nice if we beat Ghana 2-1 aet instead of them beating us 2-1 aet. BUT THAT IS FOOTBALL.

    Unless you legitimately thought we are a top 4 team, you are nuts to think that we “should” have finished much better than we did and see it as a failure. You can count the # of teams that consistently reach the last 16 at a WC on one hand. (Italy, France, etc did NOT this time).

    Our football fans need to get much more mature in this country.

  36. The World Cup wasn’t exactly a FAILURE either, sweet cheeks.

    Go root for the French, Serbians, and Italians and have fun doing it. Don’t ask more of Landon Donovan you wouldn’t ask yourself. If he says his body is tired, take it or leave it. It’s not like he said “Europe is bogus. Who cares?”

    Get a life too, while you’re at it.


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