MEXICO CITY — San Jose Earthquakes striker Chris Wondolowski will most likely be on the bench to start the US national team’s friendly here vs. Mexico on Wednesday (8 pm ET, ESPN2/Univision, live chat on MLSsoccer.com). But he still imagines he could play a big role.
“We’ve done some scouting, watched Match Analysis and seen a lot of their defenses,” Wondolowski told MLSsoccer.com on Tuesday. “I think there is a lot of space open, especially on the runs if we get crosses.”
Who will start in the backline for Mexico remains to be seen, but it will likely include the likes of Espanyol center back Héctor Moreno, Stuttgart center back Francisco "Maza" Rodríguez, and Tigres UANL wingback Jorge Torres Nilo.
“They like to pick a zone out and watch the ball, and when they see it, they attack it,” Wondolowski said. “So I will try to read that and find little seams here and there where I can get across them or pull off of them. That’s the plan.”
PREVIEW: USA vs. Mexico
Wondolowski, who leads MLS with 17 goals, has been in a mini-slump of late. He hasn’t notched a goal in league play since a hat-trick against Real Salt Lake on July 14. He did, however, score for the MLS All-Star team in their 3-2 win over Chelsea on July 25.
At halftime of the All-Star Game, Chelsea center back John Terry sought Wondolowski out to pass along a compliment: “Your movement is incredible. It’s like a nightmare for me.”
The moment was captured on camera and has been bandied about online ever since.
“It was a surreal moment, one of the greatest compliments I’ve ever gotten,” Wondolowski said. "Because 1) it was John Terry, who’s captained England national team, Chelsea and won the Champions League. He obviously knows the game. And 2) nothing brought it on. He went out of his way to tell me.”
And now Wondolowski is looking to bring that movement and that nightmare to the Estadio Azteca on Wednesday.
“If I come in, I think I can influence the game by the fact that I can find some decent areas where I can maybe finish one or two,” he said.
MLS 36: Wondolowski