Forward Chris Brown announces retirement

PORTLAND, Ore. – After a 10-year playing career, Portland Timbers forward Chris Brown today announced his retirement from professional soccer. Brown was the Timbers’ leading scorer in his lone season with the club in 2008.

A native of Portland, Brown tallied eight goals and two assists over 27 matches last season for the Timbers to finish among USL First Division leaders in scoring. Brown, 31, played nine seasons in Major League Soccer prior to joining the Timbers in 2008.

“Chris was one of the bright spots of last season,” said Gavin Wilkinson, Timbers head coach and general manager. “We understand and respect his decision, but it will be disappointing not to have him back. On behalf of the entire Timbers organization, we wish him all the best.”

During his 10 professional seasons in both the USL First Division and MLS, Brown played a total of 13,999 minutes in 224 regular-season matches, tallying 36 goals and 17 assists.

"This was a very tough decision for my family and me to make,” said Brown. “There were many things that we had to consider. Having considered all factors, we feel that my decision to retire is in the best interest of both the Timbers and our family.

“I want to thank the Timbers for giving me the opportunity to come home and finish my career in my hometown.  I also want to thank my teammates for all their hard work and dedication to the organization through a challenging year. Lastly, I would like to especially thank the fans. They are by far and away the best group of fans in the league, and in my opinion, the best fans in the U.S.”

Brown began his professional career in 1999 with the Kansas City Wizards of MLS and was a member of the Wizards’ MLS Cup championship team in 2000. He compiled 208 matches and 28 goals scored over nine MLS seasons with Kansas City (1999-2003), New England Revolution (2003-04), San Jose Earthquakes (2004) and Real Salt Lake (2005-07).

In 2000, Brown served as an alternate for the U.S. Olympic team during the Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia. He was also a member of the U.S. National Team at the U-17, U-18, and U-20 levels.

A standout at the University of Portland, Brown finished his collegiate career among the school’s all-time leaders in both goals (33) and assists (23), and was a two-time All-West Coast Conference selection.

With Brown’s retirement, the Timbers now have six players under contract for the 2009 season.