American striker Edson Buddle hopes to figure into Bob Bradley's summer plans the only surefire way he knows how -- by scoring goals.
Last year, Bradley could not ignore Buddle's prowess in the MLS (19 goals in 28 games) and gave him a coveted spot on the World Cup team. This year, it's the Gold Cup roster that Bradley is mulling, and once again deciding which forwards to invite will be an arduous task.
Buddle, a former Long Island Rough Rider in his USL days, will be fighting with Herculez Gomez, Charlie Davies and Teal Bunbury for a couple of roster spots (with "veteran" 21-year-old Jozy Altidore and Red Bulls striker Juan Agudelo ahead of them in the pecking order).
This highlight is a few days old, but worth some embedding, no doubt. Check out Buddle's strike 1:30 into this clip in a 1-1 tie for his new team, FC Ingolstadt:
At first, I thought, "sweet moves, lucky shot." It appears to glance off somebody as it soars, bends, dives ("Pauses, in mid-air, mind you") and twists into the side-netting. But, in this report on Yanks Abroad, Buddle explains the odd path the ball took from his left foot to the corner of the net: "I slipped and it hit off both of my feet. I kicked with my left and it deflected off my right foot too but fortunately still went in the right direction."
Hey, whatever works. It was Buddle's third goal for the second-division German squad. After making the move from Los Angeles to Germany in the new year, he scored in his January debut and again in late February. He had gone seven games without a goal before that beauty on Mother's Day.
You can read more about Buddle, who played 41 minutes in two World Cup games last year, in this Q&A by U.S. Soccer.