Fort Lauderdale Strikers forward Abe Thompson has announced his retirement from the team and professional soccer. Thompson concludes his Strikers career tied for first all-time in goals with 18, and second all-time in assists with nine. He will continue to be involved with soccer after accepting a position with the USL in Tampa to assist with the development of youth leagues.
“I have a lot of good memories playing soccer, but when it comes to the Strikers and my time spent here, I can say it was the most enjoyable time I spent playing soccer in my professional career,” said Thompson. “I’ll have a lot of good memories wearing that uniform and I made a lot of good friends.”
Thompson, 30, joined the Strikers on March 18, 2010 after playing five seasons in MLS with Dallas, Kansas City and Houston. He’s played in a total of 63 games with the Strikers, scoring 18 goals and nine assists. Thompson has two of the eight hat-tricks recorded by a Strikers player and is third all-time with three multi-goal games.
“I want to say thank you to the fans,” said Thompson. “They always had positive things to say to me and always gave it their all when cheering us on and cheering me on. I really enjoyed playing for them, playing at Lockhart, and representing the Strikers.”
Thompson scored his first goal with the club on May 8, 2010 against the Carolina RailHawks. His last goal as a Striker came in his final game as a professional on Sept. 29, 2012 also against the Carolina RailHawks. Thompson also scored a goal for the club in the 2010 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup giving him 19 total goals in all competitions for the Strikers.
In addition to his performance as a player for the Strikers in 2012 (four goals and five assists in 18 games), Thompson also served as an assistant coach on Daryl Shore’s staff for the entire season.
“Any time you get to work with a player like Abe Thompson it’s an honor,” said Strikers head coach Daryl Shore. “He’s had a great career, was just the consummate professional, and I want to thank him. I’m proud of what he was able to accomplish and proud to have been his coach.”
FC Dallas selected Thompson in the second round (16th overall) of the 2005 MLS Supplemental Draft. He spent four seasons with Dallas, appearing in 69 games, scoring 14 goals, and recording 11 assists before being traded to the Kansas City Wizards in September of 2008 for allocation money. Thompson scored seven goals in sixteen games with the Wizards, before returning to Texas, signing with the Houston Dynamo in the middle of the 2009 MLS season.
Abe Thompson played four seasons at the University of Maryland. He set numerous team records and collected several accolades including; NSCAA third team All-America selection, All-ACC first team honoree, Maryland Student-Athlete of the Week, Maryland/Adidas Soccer Challenge Offensive MVP, ACC Player of the Week, Co-MVP of the Maryland/Adidas Classic, Virginia/Nike Classic all-tournament team and was a member of the College Soccer News team of the week. He was named a Herman Trophy semifinalist in both 2003 and 2004. Thompson is the school’s all-time leader in points with 112.
In his youth career, Thompson earned the Golden Boot Award at the 1999 U.S. U-17 National Championship playing for the Braddock Road Warhawks. The same team Thompson won the 1999 Don Greer Cup with.
Thompson’s international experience was memorable as he scored just three minutes into his international debut with the U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team. Thompson also represented the United States at the 1999 FIFA U-17 World Championship in New Zealand where he scored a goal against the host country, and in 2000, at just 18 years of age, began playing with the U.S.U-20 Men’s National Team.
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