Legendary U.S. men’s national team forward Clint Dempsey announced his retirement from soccer effective immediately. At the age of 35, Dempsey’s announcement came via his MLS club team — the Seattle Sounders — earlier Wednesday morning.
Dempsey is recognized as one of U.S. Soccer’s greatest contributors. During an international career that spanned 14 years, he was a member of three World Cup squads (2006, 2010, 2014), scoring in all three as the U.S. advanced to the knockout round twice.
A swagger all his own.
Deuce always let loose.
— U.S. Soccer MNT (@ussoccer_mnt) August 29, 2018
Dempsey accumulated 141 appearances for the U.S., scoring 57 goals, an all-time USMNT record he shares with Landon Donovan. He also helped the U.S. win three Gold Cups (2005, 2007, 2017) and record a runner-up finish at the 2009 Confederations Cup, which included an upset of Spain. He received the Bronze Ball and was named to the Team of the Tournament during the 2009 run and was also the top goal scorer at the 2015 Gold Cup. Dempsey was named the U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year in 2007, 2011, and 2012.
During a decorated club career, Dempsey broke onto the scene with the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer, winning the 2004 MLS Rookie of the Year while reaching two MLS Cup Finals in three seasons. He was also named to the MLS All-Star team in 2005 and two Best XI squads.
He then was transferred to Premier League side Fulham, where he played seven seasons, reaching the Europa League final in 2010. He then played one season for Tottenham Hotspur, becoming the all-time leader in goals for a U.S. born player in the Premier League (57).
Following a successful run in the Premier League, he returned to MLS, signing with the Seattle Sounders in 2013. He has played six seasons with the club, being named an All-Star three times (2014-16) and winning MLS Comeback Player of the Year honors in 2017 following a season in which an irregular heartbeat forced him to miss half of the 2016 campaign. He helped the team winning the 2014 U.S. Open Cup, the 2016 Supporters’ Shield and the 2016 MLS Cup championship while returning to the final in 2017.
“Clint Dempsey has been one of the most impactful players in the history of the sport in our country,” MLS commissioner Don Garber said. “From his early success with the New England Revolution to his achievements both as a top player in the English Premier League and for the U.S. men’s national team, Clint showed us that there are no limits for an American player.”