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Gomez's Play Speaks for Itself

D.C. United and U.S. national team midfielder Ben Olsen remembers when Christian Gomez arrived at D.C. United in August 2004. "The first couple of days he was out of shape, from Argentina," Olsen said. "And I remember having conversations with guys, saying 'Where did we get this guy?' 'How much are they paying this guy?' There was all type of talk in the locker room. He was not good at all. We were very surprised." Then, in a practice game, Gomez came out of nowhere to score three goals. "OK, we kind of figured it out. This guy was for real." Indeed. Two years later, fitter, more determined, and with a better command of English, the crafty Argentine is the odds-on favorite to bag this year's MLS Most Valuable Player award. Everything D.C. United does runs through Gomez. He pulls the strings in midfield and bags more than his fair share of goals, too, finishing tied for second overall in MLS' scoring charts, with 14 goals. He also scored the only goal in United's away win against the New York Red Bulls in the first leg of the Eastern Conference semifinals over the weekend. It was also easily the best goal of the weekend, finishing off a fine one-two with forward Jaime Moreno in a crowd of players when it seemed there was no space to be had. As far as Olsen is concerned, "you don't even have to make a case," for Gomez as the league's MVP: "I don't think there's anyone close to being as good as him this year, the goals that he's scored, the impact that he has on our team. He's a beautiful player. He's fun to watch. He's great for the league."

Read the whole story at Associated Press »

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