FILE - In this June 23, 2010, file photo, United States' Landon Donovan, foreground left, celebrates after scoring a goal with fellow team member United States' Edson Buddle, foreground right, as Algeria goalkeeper Rais M'Bolhi, second from left in background, reacts during the World Cup group C soccer match between the United States and Algeria at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria, South Africa. In a matchup of teams from this year's World Cup, the U.S. plays Ecuador, Friday, Oct. 10, 2014, in an exhibition that marks Landon Donovan's finale with the American national team. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File) (The Associated Press)
Image 2 of 2
FILE - In this Sept. 23, 2000, file photo, USA's Landon Donovan, bottom right, looks on as Japan's Hidetoshi Nakata, front, and the USA's Pete Vagenas jump for the ball at Hindmarsh Stadium in Adelaide, Australia. In a matchup of teams from this year's World Cup, the U.S. plays Ecuador, Friday, Oct. 10, 2014, in an exhibition that marks Landon Donovan's finale with the American national team. (AP Photo/Christine Nesbitt, File) (The Associated Press)
BRISTOL, Conn. – Landon Donovan says he was reluctant to return to the U.S. national team after he was cut from the World Cup roster.
Donovan makes his 157th international appearance Friday night in an exhibition against Ecuador. He is the American career leader in goals and appearances, and the 32-year-old forward is to captain the U.S. for the 19th time.
He declined to discuss his relationship with coach Jurgen Klinsmann, who said Thursday he wished Donovan "could have done a bit more" and established a career with a European club rather than have spent most of his time in Major League Soccer.
Speaking Friday at a news conference, Donovan says: "I've always made decisions that have been best for me, and i know that's not always wildly popular." He adds that it's "easy for people to judge others in their career choices and life choices."