While it’s hardly earth-shattering news, Everton captain Phil Neville stated that fan favorite and American star Landon Donovan wants to come back to Everton permanently.
“I’ve spoken to Landon, and I know for a fact that he wants to come back.” said Neville while commentating for Everton’s 1-0 victory over Sydney F.C.
David Moyes has made it known he wants to bring Donovan back to Merseyside, but the MLS appears to hold all the leverage in such a deal. Considering the popularity and visibility of the U.S. team in the World Cup, it’s hard to see the league parting with their biggest star for a reasonable price. I can’t blame them really, but it would be a real waste if Donovan never got the chance to build on his successes of last season.
As for what I would prefer as both a fan of the MLS and the Toffees, I think the best idea might be somewhere in between (as most are). I think one has to let Donovan finish the season, especially with just how special that Galaxy team might be this year (even after Saturday’s debacle against New England), and then permit a permanent move after the completion of the season.
That plan would serve two purposes. Donovan might be able to leave on top, taking a victory lap around the league that he’s been such an integral part of for a number of years. At the same time, it allows him a bit of a break. He’s played almost non-stop since his loan stint at Goodison last season, making a permanent move now would only extend this run even further.
Would the MLS allow him to leave? I hope so. I believe the majority of MLS fans and U.S. Soccer fans would prefer he plays against some of the best in the world. With all that Donovan has done for the MLS and American soccer in general, they can make an exception and take care of his desires.