Veteran Chicago Fire striker Alan Gordon announced his retirement from professional soccer on Sunday morning, a decision that will take effect after the Fire’s season finale, a Decision Day presented by AT&T match vs. D.C. United.
A two-time MLS Cup champion and U.S. Open Cup winner, Gordon, 37, logged 15 seasons in Major League Soccer and earned two caps for the US national team, along the way making a name for himself as a quirky character and well-loved teammate with a nose for dramatic late goals, often as an impact substitute.
Heading into Sunday's match, the strapping target man has 59 goals and 32 assists in 293 MLS regular-season appearances (142 starts) for six different clubs, as well as two goals and two assists in 18 MLS postseason appearances (three starts). He made 22 appearances (seven starts) for Chicago this season, tallying four goals.
"I consider myself very lucky and blessed to have been a part of the continued growth of Major League Soccer," said Gordon in a statement. "I will always be grateful to have shared the field with the incredibly talented players that I have, as well as the lifelong relationships I have developed off the field. The game has given me far more than I could ever give back. I want to thank my family and friends for their continued support over the years and their willingness to allow me to chase my dream. I am proud of the things I have accomplished alongside my teammates and I am excited to begin the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead."
A sixth-round selection (53rd overall) of the LA Galaxy in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft, "Gordo" joined the Portland Timbers on loan that year during that club’s time in the A-League, then returned to LA to take part in the Galaxy’s 2005 MLS Cup-winning campaign. He also went on to play for Chivas USA, Toronto FC, the San Jose Earthquakes, Colorado Rapids and finally, the Fire.
He’s perhaps best remembered as an influential member of the Quakes during their “Goonies” era, helping San Jose win the 2012 Supporters’ Shield as part of their “Bash Brothers” strike duo alongside Steven Lenhart. Returning to the Galaxy in 2014, he was also a key role player in LA’s MLS Cup-winning side that season.
Though his international appearances were few and far between, Gordon was a member of the USMNT roster that won the 2013 Gold Cup, and made a crucial contribution to the 2014 World Cup qualifying cycle when he served up the game-winning assist to Eddie Johnson in a last-gasp 2-1 win on a rain-soaked cricket pitch at Antigua & Barbuda on Oct. 12, 2012.