Donovan and his USA teammates exited the tournament in South Africa after going down to Ghana in extra-time of their second stage clash, leaving the 28-year old with mixed emotions.
"I think we're all still a little disappointed because we felt we could have done better. But I think all in all, we feel pretty proud of what we did," he told the Washington Post. "And I think we've been able to gauge how people took to us now that we've been home. But it does none of us any good to bask in that now that it's past us."
Donovan also believes that the landscape of soccer in the States is beginning to change for the good, beginning with the mindset of the national team players who now consider themselves a very competitive side.
"The most telling thing for me is something that's not tangible; it's something that we all felt," he added.
"We've never gone into - at least not in my two World Cups and I can't imagine before that - we've never gone into a tournament thinking 'We should advance. We have a real chance to win this group. We don't fear any of the teams we're playing against.' That's just something you feel, and I've never felt that. That means something is changing, and it means other teams see us that way too, and that's really special."