Tim Howard plans to retire when Everton contract expires

Paul Thomas

The United States goalkeeper will call it quits in 2018, but that is just his club career. When his international career ends is still up in the air.

Tim Howard is planning on retiring in 2018. The United States goalkeeper said that the new contract he just signed with Everton -- which will take him until he is 39 years old -- will be his last and that he expects to call it quits when it expires.

"I'll be on a beach somewhere when I'm 40," Howard told ESPNFC. "I would pretty much take that to the bank that I won't be playing past 40. There are other things I want to achieve in life, other things that I want to do."

After a shaky 2012-13 season, Howard has turned things around this campaign. He has been excellent for Everton, finding his old form and prompting Toffees manager Roberto Martinez to say that the goalkeeper could play into his 40's, not that Howard wants to.

Howard did not comment on what his plans are for his international future. Some have said that they expect him to retire from the U.S. after the 2014 World Cup, while others think he will continue on. If he does go on, he could play in the 2018 World Cup and retire from soccer altogether after the tournament.

If Howard does retire from the U.S., the Americans will be in fine shape with Brad Guzan, who has probably been a better Premier League goalkeeper than Howard over the last couple season. Even if Howard returns for another cycle, Guzan could very well beat out Howard for the No. 1 spot so Jurgen Klinsmann doesn't have much to worry about in goal.

One thing that is off the table now is Howard returning to MLS. For years, he had spoken about returning to the league at the end of his career, but that won't happen anymore.

"Up until last week it was a possibility," Howard said. "But I think that ship has sailed for me now. I think MLS had its chance, if I'm being honest, but now I'll finish my career with Everton and be a happy man."

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