FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – Former New England Revolution midfielder Clyde Simms has formally announced his retirement from professional soccer. Simms spent two of his nine professional seasons in New England after joining the club ahead of the 2012 season.
“I’ve never really talked about this because I always chose the mind over matter approach, but my health has gotten to a point where I can no longer do that,” Simms said. “When I was a freshman in high school, we discovered that I suffered from Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), the same kidney disease as Alonzo Mourning. When I started playing with D.C., my kidney function was around 50 percent, and the last three years of my career, it has gotten down to about 20 percent.
"I fell in love with this sport at a young age and was determined not to let anything stop me. Unfortunately, for the past 10 years I have been dealing with kidney disease and it has become too tough for me to compete at this level anymore. I made sure for as long as I could I would still fight for my dream, my passion. I was very lucky to have had such a great run, but now it’s time to fight another battle. Thank you to all the fans, teammates, and coaches that supported me and helped me along my journey. To the Richmond Kickers, D.C. United and the New England Revolution, thank you for allowing me to be a part of your families. I will always be a fan. And to my family and people closest to me, thank you for allowing me to follow my dream,” Simms concluded.
Simms, 31, played nine seasons in Major League Soccer, entering the league in 2005 with D.C. United. Simms spent seven seasons as an anchor in the United midfield, where he made 182 regular-season appearances, including 147 starts. His 182 appearances still ranks fifth in the United career records, while his 147 starts ranks sixth. Playing mainly as a defensive midfielder, he scored three goals and added seven assists in seven seasons in D.C.
With United, Simms helped the club win back-to-back Supporters’ Shields as the league’s best regular-season club in 2006 and 2007, and also the 2008 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
Simms joined the Revolution in December 2011 through the Re-Entry Process. In New England, Simms made 39 appearances – and 38 starts – in two seasons. Simms served as the club’s captain for much of the 2012 season and the early part of the 2013 season, and recorded one assist in each 2012 and 2013 while playing a deeper-lying midfield position.
In nine MLS seasons, Simms made 221 appearances and 185 starts while scoring three goals and adding nine assists.
A product of East Carolina University, Simms played one season with the Richmond Kickers of the then USL First Division in 2004 before signing with D.C. United in 2005. The Jamestown, N.C., native has one cap with the U.S. National Team, which came on May 25, 2005 against England in Chicago.
Simms is currently in the process of launching an indoor cycling studio in Dedham, Mass., which he expects to open in the spring of 2014.
“We’re disappointed to see Clyde end his career but want to wish him the best in the next stage of his life,” Revolution general manager Michael Burns said. “Clyde was a true professional in his time with us and was a model player for our squad to emulate. He’s had a great career in MLS.”