Real Salt Lake icon and longtime United States midfielder Kyle Beckerman retired Monday following a 21-year professional career.
“What a ride it’s been. My playing days have come to an end, but I step away with a full heart and a lifetime of memories,” the 38-year-old posted on social media. “I’ve had a career the younger me could never have imagined.”
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The nine-time MLS All-Star played 14 of his 21 seasons with Real Salt Lake (2007-20) and steps away as the league’s all-time leader in regular season games played (498), games started (461) and minutes played (41,164) among field players.
Beckerman began his MLS career at 18 in 2000, signing with the Miami Fusion. He joined the Colorado Rapids in the 2002 MLS Dispersal Draft and scored a career-high seven goals in 31 games during the 2006 season with the Rapids, playing every minute in all 31 of his appearances.
He was traded to Real Salt Lake in July 2007.
Thank you pic.twitter.com/QSSJIJE4k8
— Kyle Beckerman (@KyleBeckerman) December 21, 2020
During his tenure as RSL captain, the club won the MLS Cup in 2009 and reached the finals in the 2010-11 CONCACAF Champions League, 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and 2013 MLS Cup. His teammates voted him the club MVP in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2016.
Beckerman also earned 58 caps with the USMNT, winning the Gold Cup in 2013 and appearing in three matches at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
“There’s no need for a long farewell when I’ve been playing each game as though it could be my last,” Beckerman said in his post Monday. “My goodbyes have been entrenched in every pre-game huddle, tackle, pass, celebration, and each post-game lap around the field.”