Tuesday October 25th, 2011

The last time Herculez Gomez was on this kind of a run, he ended up with a scoring title and a ticket to South Africa.

This time around he's at the very least deserving of another look with the U.S. national team.

Gomez continued his rampant run through the Mexican Primera Division this weekend, scoring twice for Estudiantes Tecos against then-first-place and current CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinalist Santos Laguna.

His two tallies, which both came in the opening 16 minutes of the match, were a result of making the right runs at the right time and being in prime position for a pair of poacher's goals. If the national team's woes have shown anything, it's that the United States could use some help around the goal after mustering just two scores in five appearances.

Is the 29-year-old Gomez the answer up top for 2014? Probably not. But with a striker as in-form as he is, Jurgen Klinsmann's only option is to recall him to the international level (he last played for the U.S. in an Aug. 2010 friendly against Brazil). The proof is in the numbers.

If not for a scoring change, Gomez would have eight goals in 13 appearances and be in the midst of a five-game scoring streak; however, his strike against Chivas de Guadalajara on Oct. 15 was switched to an own goal, robbing him of the stat. Regardless, he has seven goals, has officially scored in five of his last eight games and remains three off the pace for the Mexican Apertura's Golden Boot. Winning that title wouldn't be uncharted territory for him, as he accomplished the feat during the 2010 Clausura campaign while playing for Puebla, his next opponent.

Gomez wasn't the only American to find the back of the next this past week. Heck, he wasn't even the only one to find it twice. Aalborg's Chris Rolfe rediscovered his scoring touch for the first time in more than two months, notching a brace to account for his team's two goals in a victory. Edson Buddle maintained his scoring ways also, upping his season total to six goals after a tally off the bench for FC Ingolstadt.

There were a handful of Americans who set up teammates for goals, as well. Fabian Johnson marked his return to action from a herniated disc with an assist in a 1-0 TSG 1899 Hoffenheim victory; Rangers' Carlos Bocanegra and Fulham's Clint Dempsey also assisted on goals; and Steve Cherundolo drew a penalty for Hannover before being sent off in his team's upset of all-mighty Bayern Munich.

A pair of U.S. starters survived minor bouts of adversity, too. The Dutch press circulated reports that Jozy Altidore was being sent to the bench despite his hot start, and while he did perform as a reserve in AZ Alkmaar's midweek UEFA Europa League match, he returned to the starting XI for AZ's league game over the weekend.

Sporting Lisbon's Oguchi Onyewu was forced to miss a match with a groin injury, according to reports from Portugal, but he returned to make the bench for Sporting's latest game on Monday. Assuming good health, both players should be a part of the U.S. squad for next month's friendlies against European foes France and Slovenia. Considering his current run, Gomez should be joining them.

Following an active, highlight-filled stretch, here's how the Americans playing abroad fared over the last week (season statistics encompass all competitions):

Premier League

Clint Dempsey, M, Fulham -- Not in the 18 for Fulham's 1-0 loss to Wisla Krakow in the group stage of the UEFA Europa League on Thursday. Dempsey started, played 90 minutes and assisted on Costa Rican international Bryan Ruiz' goal in Fulham's 3-1 loss to Everton in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 14 games, 14 starts, 4 goals

Brad Friedel, GK, Tottenham -- Not in the 18 for Tottenham's 1-0 victory over Rubin Kazan in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Friedel started, played 90 minutes and made four saves in Tottenham's 2-1 victory over Blackburn in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 8 games, 8 starts, 36 saves, 13 goals allowed, 2 clean sheets

Brad Guzan, GK, Aston Villa -- In the 18, did not play in Villa's 2-1 loss to West Brom on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 3 saves, 0 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Marcus Hahnemann, GK, Everton -- Not in the 18 for Everton's 3-1 victory over Fulham on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Tim Howard, GK, Everton -- Started, played 90 minutes and made three saves in Everton's 3-1 victory over Fulham on Sunday. SEASON: 8 games, 8 starts, 22 saves, 11 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Eric Lichaj, D, Aston Villa -- Not in the 18 for Villa's 2-1 loss to West Brom on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 1 goal

Zak Whitbread, D, Norwich City -- Not in the 18 for Norwich City's 1-1 draw with Liverpool on Saturday. SEASON: 3 games, 3 starts

League Championship

Conor Doyle, F, Derby County -- In the 18, came on as a 70th-minute substitute in Derby County's 2-2 draw with Reading on Tuesday. Doyle was also in the 18 but did not play in Derby County's 2-0 loss to Middlesbrough on Saturday. SEASON: 2 games

Robbie Findley, F, Nottingham Forest -- In the 18, came on as a 75th-minute substitute in Nottingham Forest's 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough on Tuesday. Findley was also in the 18 but did not play in Nottingham Forest's 2-1 victory over Blackpool on Saturday. SEASON: 13 games, 6 starts, 4 goals

Jonathan Spector, M/D, Birmingham City -- Started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Birmingham's 2-1 victory over Club Brugge in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Spector was in the 18 but did not play in Birmingham's 2-0 victory over Bristol City in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 12 games, 12 starts

League One

Mike Grella, F, Brentford -- In the 18, did not play in Brentford's 1-1 draw with Notts County on Saturday. SEASON: 6 games

Frank Simek, D, Carlisle United -- Not in the 18 for Carlisle's 4-0 loss to Charlton on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Anton Peterlin, M, Walsall -- Started, played 90 minutes in Walsall's 2-1 loss to Tranmere Rovers on Saturday. SEASON: 12 games, 8 starts

League Two

Jemal Johnson, F, Southend United -- Not in the 18 for Southend's 4-1 victory over Torquay United on Saturday. SEASON: 6 games, 2 starts

Jon-Paul Pittman, F, Crawley Town -- Not in the 18 for Crawley Town's 5-2 victory over AFC Wimbledon on Saturday. SEASON: 9 games, 1 start (7 games, 1 start with Oxford United)

Bundesliga

Terrance Boyd, F, Borussia Dortmund -- In the 18, did not play in Dortmund's 5-0 victory over FC Cologne on Saturday. Boyd, a 20-year-old with German-American dual citizenship, made his first appearance on the bench for Dortmund's first team after lighting it up for the reserves and is a candidate for the U.S. Olympic team. SEASON: 0 games

Timmy Chandler, D, FC Nurnberg -- Started, played 90 minutes in Nurnberg's 2-2 draw with VfB Stuttgart on Saturday. SEASON: 11 games, 11 starts

Steve Cherundolo, D, Hannover 96 -- Started, played 90 minutes in Hannover's 2-2 draw with FC Copenhagen in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Cherundolo also started and was sent off in the 63rd minute of Hannover's 2-1 victory over Bayern Munich in league play on Sunday. Cherundolo received his second yellow for a foul on Philipp Lahm, on whom he drew a penalty to set up Hannover's opening goal in the 23rd minute. SEASON: 11 games, 10 starts

Fabian Johnson, M/D, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim -- Started, played 68 minutes and assisted on the goal in Hoffenheim's 1-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach on Saturday. Johnson returned from a monthlong injury layoff after suffering a herniated disc in his neck during a training session. SEASON: 7 games, 6 starts, 1 goal

Jermaine Jones, M, FC Schalke 04 -- Started, played 68 minutes in Schalke's 5-0 win over AEK Larnaca in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Jones also started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Schalke's 1-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 7 games, 3 starts

Alfredo Morales, D, Hertha Berlin -- Not in the 18 for Berlin's 0-0 draw with Mainz 05 on Saturday. SEASON: 3 games

Daniel Williams, D, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim -- Started, played 90 minutes in Hoffenheim's 1-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach on Saturday. SEASON: 6 games, 4 starts (1 game, 1 start with SC Freiburg)

David Yelldell, GK, Bayer Leverkusen -- In the 18, did not play in Leverkusen's 2-1 victory over Valencia in the group stage of the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday. Yelldell was also in the 18 but did not play in Leverkusen's 1-0 loss to Schalke in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 1 save, 4 goals allowed

2. Bundesliga

Edson Buddle, F, FC Ingolstadt 04 -- In the 18, came on as a halftime substitute and scored in the 52nd minute of Ingolstadt's 3-1 loss to Alemannia Aachen on Sunday. Buddle finished off a short-range header from inside the 6-yard box to slice Ingolstadt's deficit to 2-1 at the time of the goal. SEASON: 13 games, 6 starts, 6 goals

Ricardo Clark, M, Eintracht Frankfurt -- Not in the 18 for Frankfurt's 3-0 win over MSV Duisburg on Sunday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Luis Robles, GK, Karlsruhe -- In the 18, did not play in Karlsruhe's 0-0 draw with VfL Bochum on Friday. SEASON: 0 games

Matt Taylor, F, SC Paderborn 07 -- In the 18, came on as a 69th-minute substitute and picked up a yellow card in Paderborn's 1-1 draw with 1860 Munich on Friday. SEASON: 8 games, 3 starts, 4 goals

Bobby Wood, F, 1860 Munich -- In the 18, came on as an 88th-minute substitute in Munich's 1-1 draw with SC Paderborn 07 on Friday. SEASON: 2 games

Serie A

Michael Bradley, M, Chievo Verona -- Started, played 90 minutes in Chievo's 1-0 loss to Inter Milan on Sunday. SEASON: 6 games, 5 starts

Ligue 1

Quentin Westberg, GK, Evian Thonon Gaillard -- Not in the 18 for Evian's 1-1 draw with Sochaux on Saturday. SEASON: 3 games, 3 starts, 8 saves, 3 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Eredivisie

Jozy Altidore, F, AZ Alkmaar -- In the 18, came on as a 73rd-minute substitute in AZ's 2-2 draw with Austria Wien in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Altidore started, picked up a yellow card and was subbed off in the 90th minute of AZ's 1-0 victory over Roda JC Kerkrade in league play on Sunday. Altidore had a potential late goal waved off after a questionable offside call. SEASON: 15 games, 11 starts, 7 goals

Primeira Liga

Oguchi Onyewu, D, Sporting Lisbon -- Not in the 18 for Sporting's 2-0 victory over Vaslui in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. According to reports out of Portugal, Onyewu injured his groin in the team's Taca de Portugal match the previous week and didn't recover in time to be included in the squad for the match. Onyewu was in the 18 but did not play in Sporting's 6-1 victory over Gil Vicente in league play on Monday. SEASON: 7 games, 7 starts, 1 goal

Jupiler League

Sacha Kljestan, M, RSC Anderlecht -- Started, played 90 minutes in Anderlecht's 2-0 victory over Sturm Graz in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday. Kljestan also started and played 62 minutes in Anderlecht's 2-1 victory over Westerlo in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 15 games, 15 starts, 1 goal

Premier League

Alejandro Bedoya, M, Rangers FC -- In the 18, did not play in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Heart of Midlothian on Sunday. SEASON: 21 games, 17 starts, 4 goals (16 games, 15 starts, 4 goals with Orebro SK)

Carlos Bocanegra, D, Rangers FC -- Started, played 90 minutes and assisted on the second goal in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Heart of Midlothian on Sunday. Bocanegra lofted a left-footed, long-range pass from the midfield line toward the center of the box, where Nikica Jelavic volleyed it home for the insurance goal. SEASON: 12 games, 12 starts, 2 goals (1 game, 1 start with St. Etienne)

Dominic Cervi, GK, Celtic FC -- Not in the 18 for Celtic's 1-1 draw with Stade Rennes in the group stage of the Europa League on Thursday or for Celtic's 2-1 victory over Aberdeen in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Maurice Edu, M, Rangers FC -- Started, played 90 minutes in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Heart of Midlothian on Sunday. SEASON: 15 games, 15 starts, 2 goals

Primera Division

DaMarcus Beasley, M, Puebla -- Started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Puebla's 4-3 loss to Toluca on Sunday. SEASON: 13 games, 13 starts, 2 goals

Jonathan Bornstein, D, Tigres UANL -- Not in the 18 for Tigres' 0-0 draw with Monterrey on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Edgar Castillo, D, Club America -- Not in the 18 for America's 3-1 loss to Chivas de Guadalajara on Sunday. SEASON: 7 games, 5 starts

Joe Corona, F, Tijuana -- In the 18, came on as a 63rd-minute substitute in Tijuana's 1-1 draw with Atlante on Saturday. SEASON: 12 games, 7 starts, 2 goals

Michael Orozco Fiscal, D, San Luis -- In the 18, did not play in San Luis' 3-1 loss to Jaguares on Saturday. SEASON: 9 games, 8 starts

Herculez Gomez, F, Estudiantes Tecos -- Started, played 68 minutes and scored two goals in Tecos' 5-2 victory over Santos Laguna on Saturday. Gomez scored both goals in the first 16 minutes of the match, sliding to finish off a short-range attempt in the 2nd minute before slotting home a loose ball inside the 6-yard box in the 16th minute. SEASON: 13 games, 6 starts, 7 goals

Sonny Guadarrama, M, Atlante -- In the 18, did not play in Atlante's 1-1 draw with Tijuana on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game

Adrian Ruelas, F, Jaguares -- Not in the 18 for Jaguares' 3-1 victory over San Luis on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Allsvenskanliga

Ryan Miller, D, Halmstads BK -- Not in the 18 for Halmstads' 2-0 loss to Mjallby on Sunday. SEASON: 18 games, 12 starts

Samuel Petrone, F, Mjallby -- Not in the 18 for Mjallby's 2-0 victory over Halmstads BK on Sunday. SEASON: 4 goals

Superliga

Clarence Goodson, D, Brondby IF -- Started, played 90 minutes in Brondby's 2-1 loss to Silkeborg IF on Sunday. SEASON: 15 games, 15 starts

Conor O'Brien, M, Sonderjyske -- In the 18, came on as an 84th-minute substitute in Sonderjyske's 4-1 loss to AC Horsens on Sunday. SEASON: 11 games, 7 starts, 2 goals

Michael Parkhurst, D, FC Nordsjaelland -- Started, played 90 minutes in Nordsjaelland's 3-1 victory over FC Copenhagen on Monday. SEASON: 16 games, 16 starts

Chris Rolfe, F, Aalborg BK -- Started, played 90 minutes and scored two goals in Aalborg's 2-1 victory over Odense Boldklub on Sunday. Rolfe was taken down on a run into the box and then tallied from the penalty spot in the 14th minute before receiving a pass at the top of the box, cutting to his left foot and finishing on a low shot to the far post to notch the game-winner in the 84th minute. SEASON: 14 games, 12 starts, 4 goals

Brad Rusin, D, HB Koge -- Started, played 90 minutes in Koge's 1-1 draw with FC Midtjylland on Sunday. SEASON: 9 games, 7 starts, 2 goals

Tippeligaen

Sean Cunningham, D, Molde FK -- Not in the 18 for Molde's 1-1 draw with Stabaek on Friday. SEASON: 2 games, 2 starts

Mikkel Diskerud, M, Stabaek -- Started, played 90 minutes in Stabaek's 1-1 draw with Molde FK on Friday. SEASON: 29 games, 29 starts, 3 goals

Josh Gatt, M/D, Molde FK -- Not in the 18 for Molde's 1-1 draw with Stabaek on Friday. Gatt remains out with a hamstring injury, which could prevent him from taking part in the combined U.S. Under-23 and Under-20 camp slated for next month in Germany. SEASON: 27 games, 19 starts, 5 goals

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