Jeff Cunningham, right, in a game with the US Men’s National
Team before the World Cup 2010 in South Africa
With a penalty against Seattle Sounders FC, Jeff Cunningham, former Schulz Academy player, moved into the sole lead on top of the all-time MLS goal scoring charts. The 35-year-old had been tied with Jaime Moreno on 133, but his consolation strike in a 6-2 loss to the Sounders moved Cunningham up to 134.
Injuries have limited Cunningham to just 16 appearances this season, four as starts, and an inflamed right knee has prevented him from playing since July. Doctors thought he might need surgery, which could have ruled out the Jamaican-born U.S. international for the rest of the season.
However, Cunningham recovered and Columbus Crew coach Robert Warzycha noted that his veteran striker looked sharp in training this week.
Seattle was already four goals to the good when Emilio Renteria won a soft penalty for the visiting Crew on the hour mark. That was all the invitation substitute Cunningham needed to score his second of the season and set MLS history.
Of the currently active MLS players, 29-year-old Landon Donovan, on 114 goals, has the best chance of catching Cunningham.
Jeff Cunningham pushes a defender away to score one of his record breaking 134 goals in the MLS
“I remember when Jeff was 17 and played and trained for the Schulz Academy. We bought the franchise “Ft. Lauderdale Strikers” and played in the A-league, just a year before the MLS was formed. He was only 17 years of age, but already powerful and extremely fast and difficult to handle for the defenders. I am very happy for him to make such an impact in the MLS. It will be very difficult to break a record like this”, says Dr. Josef Schulz, his former coach at the Schulz Academy.