Landon Donovan wants another shot with Everton.
When asked recently if he would return to the English Premier League side where he shined last winter, the American talisman told BBC Radio Merseyside, "It would be hard to say no."
Donovan joined David Moyes' squad for a 10-week stint this past January, and quickly made a name for himself. The Goodison Park faithful embraced their American winger, and his efforts sparked the languishing Toffees to jump three places in the table.
The Los Angeles Galaxy star hoped to return to England after a stellar World Cup, but Major League Soccer's asking price was too high. Now it appears as though the dream, at least in the form of another loan deal, isn't dead.
But does it make sense, or would Donovan be better served by taking some time off?
[inline_node:319205]Between the Galaxy, the Toffees and the United States, Donovan has played a lot of soccer over the past year. He's played almost non-stop, a total of 46 games since Jan. 16.
The key word there, however, is almost. Donovan had a break from Nov. 22, 2009, until his first match in the EPL, a total of 55 days. That's an eternity in the intense world of international soccer.
The fact is that the world's best players take a short break and start back up again. The La Liga and Serie A seasons last 267 days. The Bundesliga calendar covers 279 days. The English Premier League season checks in at an astonishing 281 days. Add preseason tours, training camps, etc. and players can expect little more than a month away from the game.
MLS' regular season, on the other hand, lasts just 213 days, 241 for teams that make MLS Cup.
In other words, even if Donovan helps turn around the Galaxy fortunes and lifts his fourth MLS championship trophy, his 2010 campaign will be 40 days shorter than that of his EPL colleagues. Getting enough rest and spending time at Everton are not mutually exclusive. (He also got a break from recent US friendlies against Poland and Colombia. According to his Twitter feed, "They decided not to bring me 'cause I need some rest.")
Donovan is in the prime of his career. He'll be the first to tell you he's in the best shape of his life. He's demonstrated an impressive knack of avoiding big hits and transforming hard tackles into glancing blows. He won't be able to do so forever, but there are a number of excellent years in his body.
He wants to join Everton for a stint this winter. He deserves to do so, and then return to California once more.
Noah Davis covers the United States national team for MLSsoccer.com. You can find him on Twitter at @noahedavis