Benfica’s Freddy Adu was happy just to get a run in Wednesday’s CONCACAF Gold Cup semi-final let alone be involved in the winning goal.
The 22-year old former MLS prodigy has struggled for regular game time in the past couple of seasons having been loaned out to clubs around Europe from his Portuguese base.
Some critics piped up when Adu was selected by Bob Bradley in the USA’s Gold Cup squad but he was able to contribute well to the 1-0 victory over Panama by coming off the bench and playing a neat through-ball for Landon Donovan who set up the winner for Clint Dempsey in the 76th minute.
Adu, who had an impressive loan spell with Turkish club Caykur Rizespor last season, admits he was just happy to be a part of it.
“It was very important for me, personally, and very important for the team. I haven’t stepped on the field for the national team in over two years,” Adu said.
“To get a chance to be out there, I was very happy and very fortunate. The goal as a substitute is to get out there and bring a lot of energy and make a difference. It worked out well.
“We’ve had some similar plays in training. Landon is a player that knows the right runs to make. I had seen him before I got the ball, and had to put the ball in his path and I knew he was going to get there.”