MLS scoring leader nixes Derby County deal
Wed Jul 25, 9:11 AM ET
Eddie Johnson, the 23-year-old American striker who leads Major League Soccer in goals, has reportedly rejected a trade deal with Derby County of England's Premiership.
Johnson, who has scored 12 goals in 11 games for the Kansas City Wizards, told the Kansas City Star Tuesday that the deal was nearly in place, saying, "It was close, man - 95 percent of the way there."
Johnson's back-to-back hat tricks early this season were an MLS first. He also scored twice for the US side in the Gold Cup. Staying on home soil where he has found success was a major reason why Johnson nixed an England transfer.
"I did what my heart felt," Johnson said. "The money wasn't a problem. The money was great. But I'm a big believer that when my confidence is high and I'm confident in what I'm doing. Good things are yet to happen for me.
"I know if I keep doing what I'm doing, there are going to be other opportunities for me, and some are going to come up that I can't pass up."
In his seventh MLS season, Johnson has 38 goals and 10 assists in 114 MLS games, 83 of them starts, and nine goals in 22 caps for the US squad.
"I have goals I still want to accomplish and achieve, like winning an MLS Cup," Johnson said.
Johnson trained before the current MLS season with England's Reading squad.