New England Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis is retiring after a 16-year MLS career. Reis played five seasons for the Los Angeles Galaxy (1998-2002) and 11 for the Revolution (2003-13).
Reiss was undefeated (7-0-4) during the regular season in 2013, and led the Revs back to the playoffs for the first time since 2009. The Revs lost to Sporting Kansas City, with Reis leaving the final game with a quadriceps tendon tear that would require surgery.
The 38-year-old Reis tore the tendon in the final minutes of the team's playoff game against Sporting Kansas City on Nov. 6. The Revolution lost 3-1 to drop the Eastern Conference semifinals series 4-3 on aggregate goals.
Reis appeared in 12 regular-season matches this season, going 7-0-4 with a career-best 0.72 goals-against average.
He is the first goalkeeper in MLS history to go undefeated after making 10 or more appearances in a season.
“I have been truly blessed for the past 16 years,” Reis said in a press release from the Revolution. “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.”
Reis, who took over as the Revs full-time starter in 2004, finishes his career as the team’s all-time leader in goalie appearances (254), starts (253), minutes played (22,697), goals against average (1.31), wins (93), saves (989), shutouts (66) and saves percentage (72.3).
“Trading for Matt Reis was one of the best acquisitions the Revolution has ever made,” said Revolution investor/operator Robert Kraft in a press release. “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.
“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. 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,” Kraft said.
In November Reis was voted the MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year for his actions at the Boston Marathon bombings, and his fundraising efforts on behalf of his father-in-law, John Odom, who was seriously injured in the bombings. Reis was only yards away from the first blast. While he was unharmed, Odom was seriously injured. Reis immediately raced over to him and used his jacket as a tourniquet -- a decision that probably helped save Odom’s life.
“Matt has been one of the most outstanding and inspirational members of our club for a decade, and we want to thank him for all of his remarkable efforts, both on and off the field,” Revolution president Brian Bilello said. “He’s been a model representative of the Revolution and has helped us reach great highs during his time in New England. It’s tough to see him end his playing career and know he won’t be back out on the field next year, but we want to wish him and his family nothing but the best in the next stage of their life.”