The 37-year old English midfielder is set to play his final MLS match when the Galaxy meet Houston Dynamo in the 2012 MLS Cup final on December 1 and despite a shaky start in LA together, Donovan feels his teammate has done a wonderful job since his 2007 arrival.
“Forget about the soccer part,” Donovan said. “I've grown a lot as a person since he's been here, and I've watched him closely with all the things he does and his leadership ability and how he handles himself.
“It's been an inspiration for me. We haven't always gotten along, especially in the beginning, but he's a good person. And I think we're all very happy for him that he's ready to move on and do whatever comes next.”
He added: “It's not easy when something like this happens. It kind of turns everyone's world upside down when someone of his stature comes into a team, and thinking back, I don't think he could have handled it any better than the way he did. With all the attention and all the pressure and all the eyeballs on him, it's not easy, and I think a lot of people forget that side of it.
"A lot of people say, 'Oh, how did that affect the team?' But for him to come in and try to integrate was very difficult. There were some tough stretches, but overall it's been a resounding success, in my opinion.”