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Casey Comeback Keeping Colorado Afloat

Once known only within MLS circles as "a striker who made two unremarkable appearances as a sub for Toronto FC after three seasons during which he scored only three goals for his Bundesliga club," according to Elias Sports Bureau's Peter Hirdt, Colorado Rapids forward Conor Casey has "has revived his career and with it the fortunes of a franchise that hasn't been to the MLS Cup final since losing to D.C. United in 1997."

After struggling in his initial campaign as part of his hometown team, stats guru Hirdt notes that since July 2008 Casey has scored the most goals (21 goals in 28 games) of any player in MLS during that period and "is now within reach of a rare achievement" to become one of "only three players in MLS history have scored 20 goals over a span of 20 games in the same season," which hasn't been done since 2000.

"Once considered a rising star, having been chosen for the 2000 U.S. Olympic team without any professional experience," it took Casey a while to make an appearance for with the U.S. national team, having earned eight caps across 2004-05. After another career drought, it took almost an equal amount of time (November 2008) to get a second stint for the USA, making him one of only four players in the last 20 years that "returned to play for the U.S. in a World Cup qualifier after an absence of more than three years", with Preki (2001 vs. Honduras), Ramiro Corrales (2004 vs. Jamaica), and John Thorrington (2008 vs. Barbados) being the others.



Read the whole story at MLSnet.com »

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