You could ask nearly anyone - fan or not - what is the first thing that comes to mind about the Houston Dynamo. I'd be willing to bet the majority of people would say... Brian Ching.
Just like so many athletes, father time has officially caught up with the face of the franchise. According to a Houston Dynamo press release, Brian Ching - alongside head coach Dominic Kinnear and Team President Chris Canetti - will make a major announcement at BBVA Compass Stadium tomorrow at 3:00 pm CST.
According to a report in the Houston Chronicle, Ching will tell the world that 2013 will be his final season for the Dynamo and Major League Soccer.
"My body is telling me that it's time to call it and retire," Ching told the Chronicle. "I can't play 90 minutes at the level I want. My body hurts if I do play over 45 minutes. It doesn't just hurt a couple days after. It hurts an entire week."
Ching is far from his days of starting each and every game for Houston - a time where the captain's armband was rarely on another player, but he's still part of the heart and soul of this organization.
Prior to the start of the season, Ching signed on for one more year - in both a player and assistant coach role.
What happens beyond the end of the year and what role Ching will play is yet to be seen. The best part is he'll definitely be around - Ching will be joining the front office beginning next year.
While Ching will make this announcement public tomorrow, he will finish out the season. That gives fans few chances to see him for the remainder of the season. With heavy competition and a tight playoff race Ching will find it hard to find minutes, but he could make an appearance in Wednesday's CONCACAF Champions League game against W Connection. That may be the last chance fans get to see Ching in action.
What are your thoughts on Ching's retirement? Any memories you'd like to share about the face of the Dynamo fanchise?