Robbie Keane, MLS's best DP signing, leaves Galaxy

Robbie Keane, arguably the best Designated Player signing in MLS history, is leaving the LA Galaxy after six seasons. All he did was lead the Galaxy to three MLS Cup titles (2011, 2012 and 2014) and scored 92 goals.

Keane's exit follows that of Galaxy teammate Steven Gerrard and NYCFC's Frank Lampard. Neither had any significant impact on MLS in their year and a half in the league, but Keane was the key signing who made the Galaxy the team to beat in MLS.

Keane, 36, came late in David Beckham's fifth and what was to supposed to be his final season with the Galaxy. He assisted on Landon Donovan's winning goal in the 1-0 win over Houston in MLS Cup 2011. He scored the third goal in the Galaxy's 3-1 win in MLS Cup 2012 and had the overtime winner as it edged New England, 2-1, to win MLS Cup 2014. The titles gave the club an MLS record five championships.

“It's been a privilege to have played my part in the history of such a great club," he said, "and I leave with memories that will stay with me forever."

Keane was named the LA Galaxy Player of the Year and to the MLS Best XI in four straight seasons (2012-2015) and was the MLS MVP in 2014. He scored 10 or more goals in each of his five full seasons in MLS though he was limited to 10 goals in 17 games in a 2016 season marred by injuries. He was also away in June as Ireland played in Euro 2016.

"I still feel as fit and sharp as ever and I am looking forward to my next adventure," he said. "Having now retired from international football I am ready to focus everything I have on one last major challenge in club football and will be taking time out to consider my options before announcing my next move.”

Contrary to many stars from the EPL who have come to MLS at the twilight of their careers, Keane arrived from Tottenham at the age of 31 in 2011 and continued to represent Ireland for all six seasons in MLS. He retired from Ireland in August with a record 146 caps and 68 goals.

Omar Gonzalez, Juninho, Donovan and Keane are the only players who played in all three MLS Cup championships for the Galaxy.

“It is hard to put into words what Robbie Keane has meant to the LA Galaxy,” said LA Galaxy head coach and general manager Bruce Arena. “From day one, Keane has given everything to this team both on and off the field and has led our club to some of its greatest accomplishments. His resume and accomplishments speak for themselves; he has been the most successful international signing in this league’s history. We thank Robbie for everything he has given to this club and this city and we wish him the best in whatever comes next in his career.”

Keane embraced everything about Los Angeles, living with his family in downtown Los Angeles and loving the city's restaurant scene. On the field, the fiery Irishman served as Arena's second coach. He has spent offseasons studying in the Football Association of Ireland’s Coach Education program and completed its three-year course that included both "A" and "B" accreditations.

4 comments about "Robbie Keane, MLS's best DP signing, leaves Galaxy".
  1. Dan Eckert, November 18, 2016 at 7:18 a.m.

    Money well spent! Good luck in your next adventure.

  2. StrikerBob Norman, November 18, 2016 at 8:15 a.m.

    As a die-hard Sounder, it is with great pleasure I wish Robbie a speedy and permanent farewell from the MLS!

    Surely he made an art form of flopping and whining, but he did that to scoring critical goals as well.

    If truth be told, he is someone you want on your team. Adh mor ort, Robbie!

  3. David V, November 18, 2016 at 1:25 p.m.

    I think by "Best", this Irish surname author (Keane is Irish) must be referring to "one who has had the most success" or something like that. Otherwise, he is not the "best".

    Good on you, Robbie Boy... enjoy the next phase

  4. Daniel Clifton, November 21, 2016 at 4:40 p.m.

    I really enjoyed watching Keane play. His coolness in front of the goal with skillful moves to get him that little separation to get off a shot is what I will remember.

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