Coming of Age: Alan Gordon's take on his career year
Alan Gordon has only been with the San Jose Earthquakes since 2011.Yet the lanky 6’ foot 3”, 30 year old, forward’s stay has been nothing short of phenomenal. The “Bash Brothers,”, as Gordon calls it, a name for the prolific goal scoring trio of Chris Wondolowski, Steven Lenhart, and Gordon, has catapulted the Earthquakes into first place in the Western Conference and in the lead for the club’s second Supporters’ Shield. Gordon stands with 13 goals and three regular season games left, far exceeding his single-season goal tally of five in the 2008 season with the LA Galaxy. When asked the reasons for the Earthquakes’ success, the former Oregon State star passes the compliments onto his teammates. Gordon’s successful 2012 season highlights a career that was once thought to be limited by injuries, but his commitment to his team and his health continue to see his career reach new heights.
Along with then teammates Nana Attakora and Jacob Peterson, Gordon was traded from Toronto FC to the Earthquakes in July of 2011. San Jose marked the third club in two years for the then 29 year old. Gordon started his Earthquakes' career in stride, heading home his first goal in an Earthquakes’ uniform off of a Steven Beitashour cross on Aug. 6, 2011. Despite the auspicious start, Gordon was diagnosed with a torn rectus abdominis along with tears in his left and right hip abductors days later; requiring immediate surgery and casting doubts on the future of his career. “Many doctors thought it was career-ending. It was a very serious time in my life and forced me to put in tremendous work on the road to recovery,” said Gordon.
The “work” has paid off, seeing Gordon have a banner 2012 goal-scoring season, culminating with an invite to the US Men’s National Team training camp this past August ahead of their match against Mexico. In typical Earthquakes’ “Goonies Never Say Die” fashion, Gordon has scored a trio of late winners and equalizers and has emphatically celebrated those goals with the Earthquakes’ faithful. Coming in.as a substitute in three consecutive games during the beginning of the season, Gordon notched crucial tying goals against Chivas USA and Columbus as well as the winner against the LA Galaxy, all in stoppage time. The run was part of his 8 goal tally in 12 games, stretching from May 13th to July 22nd.
Against FC Dallas on September 29, Gordon contributed one goal and two assists in a dramatic come-from-behind tie. Gordon connected on a Marvin Chavez cross to secure the first goal of the rollercoaster night. He instantly ran to the side of the goalkeeper's box and started doing push-ups with teammate Rafael Baca before being joined by strike partner Chris Wondolowski. “That’s just the Bash Brothers’ mentality,” he said. “We’ve been doing a bunch of push-ups in the gym every morning. We came up with it a long time ago and there are plenty more celebrations in the works.”
Alan Gordon’s success has not come unnoticed. His name is being increasingly mentioned as a candidate for “Comeback Player of the Year.” The award, honoring the embodiment of hard work and humility, isn’t on his radar but it would be a fitting recognition of the journey he and his teammates have taken.
“I’m focused on the season. Any individual accolade will only be a bonus. I’m much more focused on winning the Supporters’ Shield and a championship.”