103112_onyewuoguchi_isi_usmntjt0530122063 John Todd/isiphotos.com
Soccer as the stock market

Hot or Not: Gooch's Goal, and Struggles in Germany

Could the half-forgotten defender be on his way back to the United States national team? Plus, one of the Bundesliga crew can't stop seeing yellow and an MLS striker is on fire.
BY Jon Arnold Posted
October 31, 2012
12:32 PM
Editor's note: Hot or Not runs every Wednesday.

Who’s hot?

Oguchi Onyewu: The defender said he’s still hoping for a return to the national team fold, but he wants to get his club form right first. Baby steps for the big man. A substitute appearance against his former club AC Milan brought some optimism that he might see action for Malaga in a La Liga match at some point. Still no league appearance, but he started a Copa del Rey match and scored an early goal for The Anchovies. Manuel Pellegrini may look his way more often. Could Jurgen Klinsmann be next?.

Herculez Gomez: The hard-working forward followed up his splendid goal against Toronto in the CONCACAF Champions League with another tally during a substitute appearance against Monterrey. It wasn’t enough to get Santos to victory, but it might be enough to get Gomez back into Benjamin Galindo’s regular starting XI. We’ve seen him excel as a substitute before, so it’s not a huge worry for his national team prospects if he stays in that role. But Gomez on the field at the first whistle could be a benefit for both the U.S. and a Santos team that hasn’t won in four league matches.

Kenny Cooper: The New York Red Bulls forward isn’t the player striking the most fear in opponents’ hearts, but he is frequently what gets them. Cooper enters the playoffs coming off a brace in a 2-0 win over Philadelphia. That's four goals in four matches. DC United is up first for the Red Bulls in the MLS playoffs. United has played New York enough times to know to watch out for Cooper, but he has shown he can score despite the attention.

Who’s not?

Danny Williams: He showed promise for the American midfield, but things in Germany aren’t going as smoothly. A 3-0 loss to Mainz extending a four-match skid would be bad enough, but Williams wasn’t able to get much going and picked up another yellow card. That’s his Bundesliga-leading sixth and he’s already had to sit out one match this season because of accumulation. He and teammate Fabian Johnson will hope things start looking up for Hoffenheim or they’ll soon find themselves in a relegation battle. They’re currently avoiding the drop zone only on goal differential.

Jon Arnold (@ArnoldcommaJon) is a freelance writer based in Phoenix and the co-host of MLS in 30 on NASN.TV.

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