[MLS SPOTLIGHT]Pablo Mastroeni, one of the few U.S. national team stars of the last two decades who played his entire career in MLS, announced his retirement after 16 years in the league.
The 37-year old Mastroeni, whose MLS career dated back to the old Miami Fusion, captained the Colorado Rapids to the 2010 MLS title. He joined MLS in 1998 out of N.C. State and ranks fifth all-time among field players with 334 regular-season appearances.
He played 11-plus seasons with the Rapids after the Fusion folded following the 2001 season when he was a Best XI selection. He sustained a concussion early in the 2012 season and moved to the Galaxy in 2013 to be reunited with his 2002 World Cup coach Bruce Arena.
He played a key role on the U.S. national team that reached the quarterfinals of the 2002 World Cup.
“I am honored to have spent my entire professional club career playing in MLS and I now look forward to watching this league continue to grow as I begin the next stage of my life," Mastroeni said in a statement. "I have been lucky to cross paths with so many kindred spirits, from teammates to opponents, coaches and staff, and especially fans."
He expressed thanks to the Colorado Rapids for providing him "the best years of my career, and the faith they showed in me to help bring an MLS Cup to Colorado.”