Photo credit: Ted S. Warren, AP
In a horrible gut punch to Seattle Sounder fans, star defender Chad Marshall has decided that 16 years of wear and tear has taken its toll and he can no longer perform to the level he requires of himself. And what a level that was–considered the absolute best defender that the MLS has ever seen, Marshall was able to play at a high-level for the entirety of those 16 years before a knee injury would take him down.
“After the Minnesota game, we had rapid degeneration in his knee joint and unfortunately, after some discussion, it was decided that maybe this was the best course of action,” said general manager Garth Lagerwey.
Marshall spent his first 10 seasons with the Columbus Crew before coming to Seattle in a 2014 trade. He is tied for 2nd in MS history for all-time regular season appearances (409) and minutes played. Vastly underrated by the world community he only made 12 US Men’s National Teams appearances—perhaps leaving him off the team is why the USMNT missed the World Cup?
The 34-year-old is the only 3 time winner of the MLS Defensive Player of the Year and a winner of the 2 MLS Cup Championships. Considered stoic and all business on the field, Marshall was loved in the clubhouse. There has never been an MLS player who has played at the level of the former Stanford grad for as long as he has, in fact there are rumblings that the MLS Defensive Player of the Year should be named in his honor.
“It’s sad. We joined this club almost at the same time, I think two or three days apart. … At first hearing that he was going to join I didn’t think we were going to be best buds on the team, but he’s such a likable guy,” goalkeeper Stefan Frei said.