See the collision with former Galaxy goalkeeper Steve Cronin that ended Taylor Twellman’s career

New England Revolution striker Taylor Twellman, the club’s all time leading scorer, announced his retirement from the pro game today as expected, more than two years after his brutal collision with Steve Cronin in a 2-2 tie with the Galaxy in August 2008.

Twellman, 30, scored the game’s first goal and Cronin broke a finger, but Twellman was never the same player because of lingering medical issues. Twellman played just twice in the last two seasons and never stepped on the field at all in 2010.

I was told this weekend by press box colleague that Twellman suffers from triple vision – can you imagine?

“It’s unfortunate to lose your career to an injury. It’s not a choice,” the five-time MLS all-star and former MVP said. “When you’re told that if you want to live your life and be healthy then soccer needs to stop, the decision’s made for me.”

Here’s the YouTube video:

Twellman was a brave, uncompromising forward in the vein of Brian McBride. The 2005 MLS Most Valuable Player scored 101 career goals in 174 career appearances since joining MLS in 2002. Twellman also earned 30 caps with the U.S. Men’s National Team between 2002 and 2008.

“Taylor was a worthy Bronze Boot winner at the U-20 World Championships in 1999,” said Sigi Schmid, then the U.S. coach. “He is a rare American soccer player who was a tremendous finisher of chances. The game will miss him. He will be hard to replace; he was a goal scorer and those are few and far between.”

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  • Inigo Montoya

    I remember watching that collision live and wincing. Twellman’s acceleration was phenomenal, and Cronin is a big guy. It was a nasty nasty collision.

    Both Twellman and Cronin did what we want them to do. It’s the dark side of the game, the thing every soccer player and fan fears. In the nature of the game and the run of play, there’s always the risk of career-ending injury.

    The recently retired Brian McBride is one of my heroes and I always dream there will be more of him, but I wonder how many players trying to emulate his style of play will end up like Twellman and Eskandarian.

    Nick linked to this before, but for anybody who hasn’t seen it, here’s video of a long May 2010 interview with Twellman talking about these issues:

    Twellman was the real deal. I hope he recovers fully and has a long and healthy retirement.

  • He suffers from triple vision? That cannot be a bad thing when walking into a bar filled with women.

  • Studs Up

    Twelleman will be missed, he was screwed over by the Federation on many occacions as well as by MLS in blocking his move overseas. Collision with Cronin was the last of seven head blows he unfortunately suffered. So to impicate Cronin in ending his career is a bit harsh. Soccer has to address the head injuries a lot more. The head collisions cannot be avoided but the thrown elbows have to be penalized much harsher.