Taylor Mueller announces retirement from professional football

Tacoma Defiance defender Taylor Mueller announced his retirement from professional football today. The 33-year-old ends a 10-year playing career in the United Soccer League Championship with Charleston Battery and Tacoma Defiance.

“I can’t say enough about how grateful I am to end my career with the experiences I’ve had. The support I’ve received over the past ten years has been overwhelming and extremely humble,” said Mueller. “Thank you to Charleston for giving me the opportunity to make an impact not only on the field, but off it. happens, I will always think of the Holy City as a second home. Thank you to the fans, the Regiment and the club for everything. To the Sounders family, thank you for welcoming me home with open arms. It was a privilege and a honor to be part of such a legendary and successful organization I am very much looking forward to what the future holds for the club To my family I love you all Thank you for all the support and time you put through the spent years attending, it means the world to me. Thanks again to everyone I have encountered in my career, it has made an impact that will last a lifetime.”

The Kirkland native scored 20,077 minutes in the USL Championship, the only player in league history to exceed 20,000 minutes, a score he achieved on the final day of the 2021 regular season. Mueller also ends his career with 241 appearances in the regular season in the USL Championship, just short of the all-time record. The 74 shutouts he participated in ranks first in league history for an outfield player.

“Taylor was exactly the kind of professional and leader we wanted when we signed him for the 2020 season,” said Tacoma Defiance Head Coach Wade Webber. “In his two years at the club, he has consistently shown how a professional trains hard every day and is committed to being a 24/7 athlete. His impact will be felt for years to come as our youngest players share his legacy of professionalism , continued dedication and fearlessness. It was an honor to work with him.”

Before coming to Tacoma, Mueller spent eight years at the Charleston Battery. He ranks first in the entire USL Championship for appearances (200), regular season minutes (16,567) and regular season shutouts (65) at one club, racking up all those points in his time at Charleston. He was named to the league’s All-League Team in 2017. The defender also played in 14 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup games (10 starts) for a total of 1060 minutes. During his time with the Defiance, Mueller appeared in 41 games (39 starts), scored one goal and totaled 3,511 minutes.

“First, we would like to congratulate Taylor on an incredible professional career. His contribution to the professional game has been tremendous and he joins a long line of Seattle players who have represented their community with the utmost integrity,” said Henry Brauner, Sounders FC’s director of player development. “The mentorship and guidance he has provided to our young players has been incredible, with a level of professionalism and responsibility that is unique for a veteran of his caliber. We were fortunate to have Taylor the person around our young players, and also just as lucky to have Taylor the player on our team.”

Before his professional career, Mueller was a graduate of Eastlake High School in Sammamish and attended the University of Washington from 2007-2010. In his time as a Husky, he started 67 of his 72 appearances, scoring two goals on 44 shots and being named to the All Pac-10 Second Team three times.

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