Los Angeles, CA, United States (4E Sports) – US soccer coach Jurgen Klinsmann criticized a perceived American custom of sports teams catering to star players in justifying his move of omitting Landon Donovan from the World Cup roster.
Klinsman came under fire for ignoring the most famous American soccer player of all-time.
But he emphasized that a player’s potential must not be ignored in favor of past accomplishments.
As an example, he said he could not understand why the Los Angeles Lakers would give 35-year-old Kobe Bryant a two-year contract extension for $48.5 million when his best days are over.
“It makes no sense. Why do you pay for what has already happened?” Klinsmann said in an interview with the New York Times Magazine, which was released Wednesday.
Klinsmann was put off by Donovan’s decision of spending three months on a self-imposed sabbatical away from soccer, which was foreseen as as inconsistent motivation.
He also did not believe Donovan was the same player as before, although the latter played well for the Los Angeles Galaxy.
“This is where MLS hurts him. He was playing at 70 percent, 80 percent, and he was still dominant. That doesn’t help anyone,” Klinsmann noted.