Chad Barrett solo shot with Seattle Sounders in 2015
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Journeyman Chad Barrett announces retirement after 13-year MLS career


An MLS lifer has decided to hang up the cleats for good.

On Tuesday, Chad Barrett announced his retirement from professional soccer after playing for seven teams across 13 seasons in MLS.

Barrett last played three games for Real Salt Lake early in 2017 before undergoing knee surgery. The 33-year-old forward’s option was not picked up following the season.

“I’ve always given my 100% and would never let myself give less,” Barrett wrote on Instagram. “Returning to the game would show my inability to do so. So with a heavy heart I have decided to save my legs for my future endeavors and hang up the cleats.”


Dear Family, Friends, and Fans, I have discovered that the hardest thing in professional sports is to stop. Be it a game, season, or career, it is a time full of large and small rollercoasters of the highest highs and lowest lows. No ifs, ands, or buts about it! Leaving the game for good is my Pacific Rim. After 13 seasons with 7 teams, I am announcing my retirement for professional soccer. My recovery road has been long and arduous. I’ve always given my 100%, and would never let myself give less. Returning to the game would show my inability to do so. So with a heavy heart I have decided to save my legs for my future endeavors and hang up the cleats. I would like to thank everyone that helped me attain a dream I had since seeing my first professional game at Vicarage Road at the age of 9. The inaudible sound of my own screams drowned out by the surrounding thunder created by the cheers of 20,000 faithful when Watford scored solidified my position...striker. I dreamt of creating that moment! I was able to achieve this and replicate it many times over thanks to my family, my teammates, and my coaches throughout my youth and professional life. Thanks to the unsung heroes of everyday professional life, the trainers, equipment managers, massage therapists, doctors, and strength trainers....THANK YOU! Thank you to the fans! The lovers and the haters. Both filled me with different kinds of motivation every day I got to be a pro. @chicagofire , @torontofc , @lagalaxy , @nerevolution , @soundersfc , @sjearthquakes , and @realsaltlake , thank you for allowing me to entertain in your cities and organizations. And to their fans especially...Thank you for accepting me and helping me create so many great memories - times I’ll never forget celebrating with you. This journeyman’s destination has been reached, but this adventure has been the time of my’s been a dream and honor to share it with you all. And lastly, thank you most of all to my Mom, aka ‘Mama Barrett’. My number 1 fan who never missed a game and always encouraged me to follow my dreams! Couldn't have done it without you. Thanks for the memories, - Chad Barrett #19

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Barrett, a San Diego native, played two seasons at UCLA before the Chicago Fire selected him third overall in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft, one spot behind Brad Guzan. He spent most of the next four seasons in Chicago, scoring 18 goals for the Fire, before getting traded to Toronto FC in 2008 in exchange for Brian McBride.

Known for his high work rate and ability to poach, Barrett scored 16 goals for TFC from 2008-10 and then eight more for the LA Galaxy from 2011-12.

Barrett was loaned to the Norwegian cub Valerenga for past of the 2012 season — his only time away from MLS — and then played for the New England Revolution in 2013 and Seattle Sounders FC from 2014-15, where he was a valuable member of Seattle’s 2014 Supporters’ Shield squad.

He also scored a goal in the 2014 U.S. Open Cup final to help the Sounders win the title, the second time he lifted a USOC trophy after winning it with Chicago in 2006. He was a member of the Galaxy’s 2011 MLS Cup-winning squad and helped TFC capture Canadian Championship titles in 2009 and 2010, as well.

He closed his career with the San Jose Earthquakes in 2016 and then RSL in 2017, finishing with 58 MLS goals — the 45th most in league history.

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