Sounders' Eddie Johnson back from successful stint with USMNT

Mike Ehrmann

The Sounders forward was one of the more impressive national teams players in the men's two latest World Cup qualifying wins.

There is seizing an opportunity when life presents it, and then there is what Seattle Sounders forward Eddie Johnson did when he received his first U.S. men's national team call up in two years.

In two games, Johnson had two goals and an assist. None of his contributions can be rated as more important than the other. Johnson scored the only American goals in a 2-1 win over Antigua and Barbuda and his assist to Clint Dempsey against Guatemala led to the deciding goal.

Johnson started on the wing in the match against Guatemala, but his experience as a forward helped him find Dempsey for the goal, 710 ESPN AM reported.

"I'm a forward. I know where a forward wants the ball at when they make runs in the box. That's where I would want the ball, that's the run I would make," Johnson said. "I said `You get there, I'll put the ball there' and that's why we did our handshake when he scored."

Johnson said it was a great experience as he watched his Sounders claw to a 0-0 tie on Wednesday against Real Salt Lake. Johnson was held out of the game after playing 90 minutes in the win over Guatemala the day before.

"Anytime you get to go represent your country in two important games in two World Cup qualifiers where we had to get results; it was good to get called into the camp (and) it shows how confident the coach was in bringing me and the other guys in to get the job done. Credit to all my teammates and everyone here in Seattle for the opportunity to put myself in position to be successful."

For anyone following Johnson's career lately, it isn't much of a surprise that the forward was so successful with the USMNT. The Sounders traded Mike Fucito and Lamar Neagle to the Montreal Impact for the rights to Johnson in the MLS allocation process, and Johnson hasn't disappointed one bit. He leads the Sounders with 14 goals in 26 games and has taken a good deal of the pressure off of fellow forward Fredy Montero to score goals.

Still, when Johnson does score the Sounders have a much better chance of coming away with three points. They are 8-2-2 this season when he scores.

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