David Beckham said it was his dream to achieve consecutive MLS titles in his final game with the LA Galaxy on Saturday.
The 37-year-old Englishman signed off in the perfect way after the Galaxy’s 3-1 triumph over the Houston Dynamo in front of 30,510 spectators at The Home Depot Centre.
“Our goal at the start of the season was to win a championship, last year we were amazing and we did it,” Beckham said.
“This year we didn’t start well but we came good and we did it at the important time.”
After missing a guilt-edged chance earlier in the match, captain Landon Donovan bravely stepped up to slot home a 61st-minute penalty that put the Galaxy 2-1 up.
“A lot went through my mind,” Donovan said.
“When you’re in a moment like that, you feel like you let the team down. Candidly, it sat with me until half-time.
“I took a few minutes at half-time, sort of collected myself and tried to stay present, because you can’t change it.
“When the penalty came, I’m not going to fool anyone and say I was calm about it, I was pretty nervous.”
The penalty was Donovan’s 22nd in play-offs – a record – and his willingness to take on the duty took plenty of courage according to Beckham.
“It took some balls for him to step up and take that penalty,” Beckham said.
“I could see what he was like after that chance leading up to half-time.”
With Beckham leaving for the final frontier of his professional career and Donovan in the twilight of his career, both are yet to make a firm decision on their future.
“I haven’t made a decision (on my future) in the last few days,” Donovan said.
“We’re going to enjoy this, go on a nice vacation and we’ll figure out what’s next.
“It’s just been a long two years for all of us. It’s not a woe-is-me story, but I have to listen to my heart and gut and right now my gut says to get away for a while.”
Galaxy coach Bruce Arena admitted the loss of both Beckham and Donovan would be a huge blow but said he would accept whatever decision was made.
“I probably would be (surprised if Donovan retired),” Arena said.
“We will be fully supportive of whatever Landon wants to do. He has still so much to offer the game as a player.
“I think hopefully, with a little bit of rest, he’ll be ready to get back at some point.”