Jeff Cunningham, the 2009 leading scorer in MLS, is at Auxerre, the surprise of France Ligue 1 season, training to prepare for the U.S. national team's January camp that will kick off preparations for the 2010 World Cup.
French-American Jerome de Bontin, the former president of AS Monaco, is close to Auxerre management, and suggested that Cunningham head to the Burgundy region for offseason training at AJA. De Bontin has been in contact with other national-team players about following Cunningham to Auxerre.
Auxerre is one of the smallest clubs in France but has a long history of success, gaining promotion to the First Division in 1980 and winning the league title in 1996.
It opened the 2009-10 season with three straight losses but recovered to run off seven straight wins and take the league lead. Following a 1-0 loss to Paris St. Germain, Auxerre is tied for second place, two points off the lead.
It's perhaps most famous for having produced French great Eric Cantona.
Auxerre recently entered into a partnership with U.S. club Rush.
One of Colorado Rush's top stars, Zach Foxhoven, younger brother of the University of Portland star Danielle Foxhoven, will travel to Auxerre to train with the Auxerre academy players as early as next January.