Just days before the start of the 2014 World Cup, the United States’ starting goalkeeper in its excellent 2002 run -- and a member of its 1994 team -- has signed a new club contract.
Brad Friedel will be 44 when his one-year extension at Tottenham Hotspur, which he signed Monday despite knowing he’ll likely serve as Hugo Lloris’ back-up again, expires. This deal has an additional wrinkle: Friedel will become the club’s ambassador to the U.S., and he “will have a wide-ranging remit that will include greater involvement in our Global Coaching program and engaging with our 30 Supporters Clubs from across North America as we continue to increase our global presence and bring our international fanbase closer to the Club,” according to the Spurs' press release.
Friedel, 43, made one league appearance for Spurs in 2013-14, playing 90 minutes in Tottenham’s 1-0 loss against Newcastle United on Nov. 10, 2013. The most he played in any competition was in the Europa League, where he played six full matches.
Rumors of a return to Major League Soccer circulated as Friedel has played increasingly fewer minutes in the past two years, but Monday’s signing squashes those possibilities, perhaps permanently. Still, he seems ageless, even offering to return to the U.S. national team in an emergency situation as recently as March.