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Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Adu hopes Gold Cup will help Europe prospects

WASHINGTON -- Some positive press in Portugal has Freddy Adu thinking he might finally get some playing time in Europe.

Adu scored his second career goal for the U.S. national team in Saturday's 4-0 win over Grenada in the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

OK, so it was against a low-ranked team, and Adu was getting a rare chance to start because coach Bob Bradley is giving many regulars some time off following the Confederations Cup, but at least it was something that could make an impression.

"There's reports in the papers that I might get my chance in Benfica," Adu said Tuesday. "I know they're watching."

Adu, once hyped as U.S. soccer's greatest prodigy when he joined MLS at age 14, has been nothing more than a fringe player since moving to Portuguese club Benfica in 2007. Last season Benfica loaned him to Monaco of France's Ligue 1, where he played just 169 minutes over 10 matches.

The 20-year-old midfielder said he will return to Benfica for preseason training after the Gold Cup, and that his agent has been talking to "a couple of clubs."

Adu is expected to be in the lineup again Wednesday for his homecoming when the U.S. faces Honduras at RFK Stadium. Adu is from Maryland and spent his first three seasons with D.C. United. He said he had to secure 102 tickets for family and friends.

He said he's also had to deal with "fitness, rust, all that stuff" that comes from a lack of playing time.

"I've learned when you do get that chance," Adu said, "you've got to go out and get the job done."

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