San Jose's Chris Wondolowski celebrates a goal against the New England Revolution.
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Q&A: San Jose Earthquakes forward Chris Wondolowski

SAN JOSE, Calif. — San Jose Earthquakes forward Chris Wondolowski may have burst into the public consciousness last season with his league-leading 18 goals, but he’s actually been a member of MLS for a half-dozen years now.

On the brink of his 100th MLS regular-season appearance — slated for Saturday against the Portland Timbers (10:30 pm ET; watch LIVE online) which, not coincidentally, will be Chris Wondolowski Bobblehead Night at Buck Shaw Stadium — put the reigning Golden Boot winner to the Q&A test. What does 100 matches mean to you?

Wondolowski: Actually, it means a lot. I remember my rookie year, in preseason, just hoping for one. It’s gone quick, [but] I still think I can remember just about every one. It’s pretty special. It’s awesome, a great honor. You’ve received all these accolades and honors recently. Have you done everything you want to do in this league?

Wondolowski: No. I’ve been fortunate to be on two MLS Cup-winning teams. I felt like I had a role on that team, but I wanted to play a bigger role and win MLS Cup. That’s my main goal, is to win one and be out there when that final whistle blows. Last year, you snuck up on some teams. Are teams taking things away from you now that they didn’t last year?

Wondolowski: I think they might be able to key on me, but I’m still getting chances and it’s on me to finish them. Even [against] DC last game, I had a great opportunity, didn’t finish it. I’m not exactly sure where I was last year at this point, but having eight [goals] right now, it’s not the worst thing. I feel that I can have a lot more and should have a lot more, but it just shows how great our team is, and if we create opportunities that we’ll have guys who can finish them. A lot of guys in this league want to try playing in Europe. You just signed a new four-year contract here. Are you satisfied with being an MLS lifer?

Wondolowski: There’s a lot worse places you can be. I’ve honestly loved my time here in MLS. It’s a great [league]. I love being back in California. I think the league’s really growing as a whole. If I’m here for life, I’m alright with that. I can live with that. What’s your favorite moment out of 100 matches?

Wondolowski: I’d probably have to go with scoring against New York in the playoffs last year. I don’t think that counts in the 100, though. Maybe I’ll go with my first start, then. Did they get the bobblehead right?

Wondolowski: I saw a couple versions before, and it is a lot better. They did get it right, and I think it’s pretty funny. Does the bobblehead have a better left foot vs. right foot?

Wondolowski: I think it’s just an overall better player. It seems to have the center of gravity low to the ground and I think it’s better-looking than me, too. I saw pictures [of it] with all these girls. What are your thoughts on the hiring of Jurgen Klinsmann as US national team coach?

Wondolowski: To be honest, I really don’t know him a whole lot, personally. I think he’s got a great pedigree and I think it’ll be good for US Soccer. It’s good to have a different outlook on it as a coach, where I think it’s more offensive and [Bob] Bradley was more of a defensive stalwart. I think it could be good for them. But we’ll see. Does that make you nervous, since Bradley gave you your shot on the national team?

Wondolowski: Yeah, a little bit. I’m not sure if [Klinsmann] knows a whole lot about me or knows the type of player [I am]. Bradley was able to get to know me through the January camp and the month of Gold Cup. I thought I showed well at times and had a good relationship.

Geoff Lepper covers the Earthquakes for He can be reached at On Twitter: @sjquakes