Donovan to return to Galaxy in late March
Landon Donovan will rejoin the defending Major League Soccer champion Los Angeles Galaxy in the last week of March, the club said on Sunday. But the striker's US national team status remains unknown.
Donovan requested a leave of absence from the team after helping the Galaxy with their fourth MLS crown last December and has not played for the US team since then either as he ponders his future plans a year before the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.
"After a series of collaborative discussions between Landon, his representative and our key club leaders, we've agreed to allow Landon to remain on an extended leave of absence and return to training with the team during the final week of March," Galaxy general manager and coach Bruce Arena said.
"We understand this arrangement is not ideal, but we are confident it will allow Landon the time he needs to be both mentally and physically prepared for the upcoming season," Arena added. "We remain focused on our preparation for the start of the 2013 season and look forward to Landon rejoining us next month."
Donovan, 30, is the all-time Galaxy leader with 92 goals and has set up 79 others over 194 appearances in eight seasons for Los Angeles. He ranks third in MLS history with 124 career goals over 12 seasons. He also has a record 49 goals in 144 caps with the US squad, but was absent when the Americans opened their final round of FIFA World Cup qualifying in the CONCACAF 'Hexagonal' earlier this month with a loss at Honduras.