Sebastien Le Toux announced his retirement from professional soccer on Monday, bringing a close to a well-traveled MLS career that saw the Frenchman become a cult hero at several clubs, but nowhere more so than the Philadelphia Union.
One of the top players in Union history, Le Toux will sign a ceremonial one-day contract to retire as a Philadelphia player on Tuesday during a press conference at Talen Energy Stadium. In recognition of his contributions to the club, Le Toux will also become the inaugural inductee in the newly formed Philadelphia Union Ring of Honor, with the ceremony set to take place during the Union’s home match against the Vancouver Whitecaps – another of his former teams – on Saturday, June 23.
Le Toux retires as the Union’s all-time leader in nearly every major offensive category, including games played (175), goals (50), assists (50), shots (320), shots on goal (144) and corner kicks (379).
With 59 goals and 57 assists across his distinguished MLS career, he is one of only 19 players in the league’s 50-goal, 50-assist club, and one of eight to achieve those milestones for one club. Le Toux also won the MLS Individual Fair Play Award twice (2010, 2011).
“Philadelphia is where I had the most opportunities on and off the field,” said Le Toux in a club release. “It is where I found career success with the Philadelphia Union, met my wife, and found my forever home with friends, family, and fans that have become family.”
A native of Mont-Saint-Aignan, France, Le Toux arrived in North America in 2007 as a signing of the Seattle Sounders during their pre-MLS days in USL, eventually becoming the first player added to the Sounders’ MLS roster ahead of their 2009 expansion season. He helped Seattle win that year’s US Open Cup, scoring three goals in the tournament, and later helped Philly reach back-to-back Open Cup finals in 2014 and 2015.
He moved to Philadelphia as part of the 2009 MLS Expansion Draft and was a member of the Union’s first-ever starting 11, scored their first-ever goal and bagged their first-ever hat trick en route to an All-Star campaign highlighted by 14 goals and 11 assists. Le Toux remains the first and only Union player to reach double digits in both goals and assists over a single season.
Traded to Vancouver ahead of the 2013 campaign, Le Toux was on the move again just a few months later, joining the New York Red Bulls. But he returned to Philly in yet another trade at year’s end and spent most of the next four seasons with the Union before finishing his career with brief stints at Colorado and D.C. United.
“Sebastien Le Toux has played a vital role in our organization’s history and it’s fitting that he’s retiring as a member of the Philadelphia Union,” said Union head coach Jim Curtin. “He was key in our club’s success and created memorable moments.
“Whether scoring a hat trick in our first official home match, to scoring the first playoff goal in Union history, or leading us to back-to-back Open Cup Finals, Sebastien always brought his best for the club. He is the face of the Philadelphia Union and we’re happy to be a part of his final chapter in his career.”