Columbus, OH – Frankie Hejduk retired Thursday, ending a 16- year career that included two MLS Cup titles and two World Cup appearances.
The 37-year-old spent the majority of his club career with the Columbus Crew, captaining the squad to the MLS Cup title in 2008. He also won the title with the Los Angeles Galaxy last season.
Hejduk made 85 appearances for the United States from 1996-2009, and played in the 1998 and 2002 World Cups. He also made the roster for the 2006 World Cup, but was not able to play due to injury.
"I want to thank my family and all of my teammates ... coaches and fans for making my life that much more special, both on and off the field," he said.
"We all share a special bond that's tough to explain to anyone outside that circle, but the memories we share and the good times we had will never be forgotten or matched."
Hejduk started his career in MLS with the Tampa Bay Mutiny in 1996, and later played in Germany with Bayer Leverkusen and in Switzerland with St. Gallen. He returned to MLS in 2003 with Columbus.
Although he spent his final season with L.A., Hejduk returned to Columbus to announce his retirement and to accept a position as brand ambassador.
"Now I look forward to continuing my association with the Crew and helping to grow the sport of soccer," he said.
"Frankie Hejduk personified the Crew and was a tremendous ambassador for the club during his storied playing career, so creating the position of brand ambassador for him is a natural extension," said Crew president and general Manager Mark McCullers.
Hejduk, who also played in the 1996 and 2000 Olympic Games, played 147 matches for the Crew and had seven goals and 16 assists.