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Twellman will call it a career

Concussion issues slow Revolution star

With 101 goals in an MLS career that began in 2002, Taylor Twellman is the Revolution’s all-time leader. With 101 goals in an MLS career that began in 2002, Taylor Twellman is the Revolution’s all-time leader. (File/The Boston Globe)
By Frank Dell’Apa
Globe Staff / November 3, 2010

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Revolution striker Taylor Twellman is expected to announce today he has ended his career, two years after suffering a concussion in a Major League Soccer game, according to team and league sources.

Twellman, 30, is the Revolution’s all-time leading scorer with 101 goals in 174 regular-season games, and is sixth in the league in career goals.

Though Twellman has displayed a remarkable ability to overcome injuries — he scored with a broken foot and concussion — he was unable to return to full speed after absorbing a blow to the head from Los Angeles Galaxy goalkeeper Steve Cronin Aug. 30, 2008.

Typical of Twellman’s fearless style, he headed in the tying goal while taking Cronin’s punch. Twellman played in the Revolution’s final eight regular-season games in 2008, scoring three goals, but sat out the playoffs. He returned in a reserve role for a May 29, 2009 game and again received a shot to the head, from D.C. United goalkeeper Josh Wicks. He scored the final two goals of his career a week later in a 4-0 win over New York.

Twellman, who has been working as a television commentator while recovering, underwent extensive medical examinations. He expected a return to full health, but only after a long period of abstaining from physical activity. Twellman trained briefly with the Revolution last season, but concussion and whiplash symptoms persisted, and he was declared out for the season in July.

A two-sport star growing up, Twellman chose soccer over baseball. He turned down a contract offer from the Kansas City Royals, accepting a baseball scholarship from the University of Maryland. But he also played soccer for the Terps, and started his professional soccer career in Germany following the 1999 FIFA Under-20 World Championships in Nigeria.

After a two-year stint with a Munich team, Twellman returned to the United States, and was selected by the Revolution with the second overall pick in the 2002 MLS draft. Twellman scored in the 10th minute of his first start, a 2-0 win in Columbus, and led the league in scoring as a rookie with 52 points, including 23 goals.

Twellman also scored six goals in 30 appearances for the US national team.

Twellman’s $400,000 annual contract expires in December. The Revolution announced their intention to sign at least one designated player, who can be paid above the league’s maximum salary.

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