BY DARRELL LOVELL
HOUSTON – In a camp of players looking to get their first look with the USMNT, Chris Wondolowski is hoping to finally cash in on his latest chance.
The MLS scoring demon has accomplished everything at the MLS level but success has escaped him at the international, and it is not for a lack of chances. In six trips with the national team, Wondolowski has yet to secure his first US goal.
Heading into Tuesday’s match, however, Wondolowski is looking to take his latest opportunity as well as he can.
“To be honest, I feel like I’m kind of playing with house money right now,” Wondolowski told reporters. “I wasn’t sure I was going to get this chance. Now that I’m here it’s a joy man, it’s fun and I’m just loving it right now.”
While goals have been elusive the forward’s work ethic has kept him as a valuable part of the team. In his past showings on the international level the forward has shown that he can do the work the US boss demands of his forwards, which includes running off the ball and working to get into good positions.
In Tuesday’s open training he was showing those same skills off in front of the Houston crowd; routinely getting in the mix and scoring on a heel flick. It was the traits that MLS fans have come to know. Now, it is that training pitch success that he needs to figure out how to duplicate when the lights come on.
But while it is still a work in progress, Wondolowski knows the man making the decisions not only understands what he is going through, he has full confidence that the San Jose Earthquakes hitman can get things going at the next level.
“He tells me to just trust myself and keep doing what I’m doing and it will come,” the striker said. “What really helps is that he has confidence in me and I think that’s really helping me grow as a player.
“I’m hoping to play well out there and I think if I play well and create opportunities I’ll have a good chance at it.”