A Donovan Tribute

The all-time top goal scorer and assist leader for USA soccer.  Number one in MLS for career goals: regular season, playoffs AND all-star game.  This is none other than Landon Donovan.

In light of his recent announcement to retire from the LA Galaxy and Major League Soccer, I present a tribute to what many feel is his greatest goal.

By the way, the announcement comes right on the heels of Donovan scoring the game-winning goal in the MLS All-Star game versus Bayern Munich.  Anyone else think Jurgen Klinsmann, coach of goal-challenged Team USA, noticed that Donovan (whom he left off the World Cup squad) blasted a goal past German goal keeper Manuel Neuer (the man universally called the best keeper at WC14)?

This tribute is a visual of the ball path leading to Donovan’s 90th minute goal versus Algeria in the 2010 World Cup (which as we know, would end up being his last).  The significance of the goal cannot be understated, as it single-handedly took the USA from elimination to winners of Group C, advancing to the round of 16.  The last minute goal of a 0-0 game brought pandemonium to the country, as awesomely documented in dozens of fan reaction videos, garnering many millions of views online. The accomplishment was defining.  The moment was electric.

The play developed thus: a sure-handed stop of a header toward’s USA’s goal by Tim Howard, who immediately overhands an outlet to Donovan.  Donovan takes the ball in stride and streaks down the right side.  The play starts with a perfect pass to Jozy Altidore who crosses to Clint Dempsey whose point-blank shot is blocked by Algerian keeper Rais M’Bolhi. The rebounded ball sees a quick flick of the inside of Donovan’s right foot and rest is history.

Included is the delightful and historic commentary of announcing great, Ian Darke.

DonovanTribute

Darke’s commentary:

“…Distribution: brilliant.  Landon Donovan.  There are things on here for the USA… Can they do it here? Cross. Dempsey is denied again… But Donovan has scored!!  Oh, can you believe this?!  Go(al) go(al), USA! Certainly through.  Ohhh, it’s incredible!  You could not write a script like this!”

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