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Matt Reis Retires After 16-Year MLS Career

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Retired Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Retired Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS) –  Matt Reiss is calling it a career.

The New England Revolution legend announced his retirement on Wednesday after a 16-year MLS career. The 38-year-old Reis retires with every single Revolution goalkeeping record.

“I have been truly blessed for the past 16 years,” Reis said. “I’ve been able to do something that I love – play soccer for a living. There have been many coaches who have influenced my development and helped get me to this point, and I have played with some fantastic players, many of whom are friends for life. I have played for two amazing organizations over the years. Both of those owners, the Kraft family and Mr. Anschutz, are deeply committed to ensuring soccer thrives in the United States. Because of their guidance, MLS has come a long way in the last two decades, and I am very proud to have played my whole career in this league and with these teams. I also want to make sure the fans know how much I’ll miss them, too. They’ve made this amazing ride more fun to be on through the years.”

A four-time All-Star, Reis split his professional career between the Los Angeles Galaxy (1998-2002) and the Revolution (2003-13). He spent most of his time in Los Angeles on the bench, and was traded to the Revolution in 2003. He served as New England’s back-up in his first season in New England, but assumed starting goalkeeping duties in 2004 – a role he held until his retirement this season.

“Trading for Matt Reis was one of the best acquisitions the Revolution has ever made,” said Revolution Investor/Operator Robert Kraft. “On the field, he was an elite MLS goalkeeper who set every career goalkeeping record in club history. He was a respected leader, both on the field and in the locker room, for more than a decade. He quickly became a fan-favorite and, for much of his career, was one of the faces of our franchise.”

Reis won both major championships in U.S. professional soccer: the MLS Cup in 2002 and the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup  in 2001 and 2007. Reis was a member of six teams that played for an MLS Cup championship, including three with New England. He started all three of the Revolution’s three-straight MLS Cup appearances in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

In 2013, Reis became the first-ever goalkeeper in MLS to go undefeated after making 10 or more starts, going 7-0-4 on the year. His final season in MLS was perhaps his best, finishing with a 0.72 goals against average, and his strong play late in the season helped the Revs surge up the standings. They jumped from seventh place to third place in the final month of the campaign and earned a trip to the MLS playoffs.

But Reis’ impact went far beyond the soccer field. He was one of the Revolution’s most active players in the community, and a four-time winner of the team’s humanitarian of the year award. He was awarded the 2013 MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year honor last month for his life-saving heroics and fundraising for a very special Boston Marathon bombing victim, his father-in-law, John Odom.

“Off the field, he was a tremendous ambassador for the Revolution, participating in countless community events throughout New England and earning MLS Humanitarian of the Year honors this past season,” said Kraft. “We will miss his steadying presence on the field, his constant presence in the community and his quick wit in the locker room. We thank Matt and his family for their many contributions and wish them the very best in the future.”

Reis retires as the Revolution’s longest-tenured player in club history, playing for the team for 11 seasons.

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