— Stuart Holden (@stuholden) February 3, 2016
In an essay published on US Soccer’s official site, Holden wrote: “It’s time to stop fighting my body. I’ve known for a while, but I’ve struggled to admit it to myself and to others. The countless sleepless nights, the aches and pains, and the constant mental battles were all signs pointing to a new path. But every time I was about to utter the three big words “I am retired”, all the memories of walking into roaring stadiums, scoring last-minute goals, and being part of amazing teams dragged me back! The same never-say-die attitude that drove me to fight like hell my entire career wouldn’t let me say the “R word”.” Holden chose to announce his retirement the same day his wife gave birth to their daughter. ESPN FC’s Doug McIntyre talked to Holden’s teammates.
Also in the soccer news, SI.com’s Grant Wahl talks to USWNSTPA executive director Rich Nichols about the lawsuit US Soccer filed against the Women’s players union. The NY Times’ Andrew Das broke the news about the Federation’s lawsuit. The Toronto Sun’s Kurtis Larson takes a tour of BMO Field, currently undergoing renovations as stadium capacity increases for new co-tenant the CFL’s Toronto Argonauts. Soccer America’s Paul Gardner questions LA Galaxy coach Bruce Arena’s signings this off season.
FC Yahoo’s Leander Schaerlaeckens explains how Barcelona dominated Valencia in the Copa del Rey. The Guardian’s Sid Lowe has the aftermath for Valencia coach Gary Neville, now facing calls for his resignation. The Mirror’s James Whaling also has Valencia fans not responding well to a 7-0 loss. The Daily Star’s Dave Armitage compares Aston Villa’s approach to Leicester City’s.
WSC’s Richard Mason looks at what the January transfer window does in practice to smaller clubs in Serie A and why it’s a problem across European club soccer. AFP’s Kieran Canning, Rosa Sulleiro, and Jean Decotte update the legal proceedings involving Barcelona over Neymar’s transfer.
According to Goal.com’s Matthew Rogerson, FIFA presidential candidate Ali bin al-Hussein isn’t happy with FIFA’s decision to withold funds from CONCACAF and CONMEBOL. Inside World Football’s Andrew Warshaw explains why FIFA made that decision. Reuters’ Brian Homewood has FIFPro questioning FIFA’s latest reform movement.
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