CARSON, Calif. - For Landon Donovan, playing 100 games for the United States is part of a continuing process.
"I don't set goals like that," he said. "I'm proud of it, but I enjoy winning as much as possible. My main goal is to try to win MLS Cup every year and try to get us to the World Cup."
The 26-year-old Donovan enters Sunday's World Cup qualifier against Barbados as the youngest player to appear 100 times for the United States. He achieved that milestone by starting the June 8 exhibition against Argentina.
"I'm proud of it," said Donovan, who played in the past two World Cups and won two MLS Cups. "It's a good accomplishment - but, hopefully, I'm not done."
Scoring and versatility have marked Donovan's career with the national team. Since making his international debut in 2000, Donovan has become the national team's all-time leader in goals (35) and assists (30).
The native of Redlands, Calif., amassed those totals while playing as a winger, a central midfielder, and a forward.
"Around the world, great players often have the ability to take on slightly different roles," U.S. coach Bob Bradley said yesterday. "You watch Manchester United and you see Cristiano Ronaldo on the left, on the right, and up front."
Yet Bradley said he was most impressed with Donovan's development as a leader.
"Sometimes, we forget that he's still young," Bradley said. "But he's made a lot of progress. It's in little things: getting a good tone every day, having a greater sense of what's going around him with each player."
For Donovan, that improvement reflects a renewed commitment to his craft.
"In the past, I would start Friday night preparing mentally for a [weekend] game," Donovan said. "Now, it's Sunday night or Monday morning. I get my mind focused on eating properly, hydrating properly, training properly."
Donovan's new approach has paid immediate dividends. He scored eight goals in his first five games with the Los Angeles Galaxy this season, and leads Major League Soccer with nine goals and six assists.
"The idea of being a professional is doing it that way all time," he said. "I've noticed, and now I've found out, that if I do that, I can be very successful."
Despite a nagging groin injury that kept him out of two games with the national team and one with the Galaxy, Donovan said he was ready for Barbados.
"With where I'm at right now, the two main things are real hard acceleration and shooting with the instep," he said. "I'm not 100 percent, but I feel good enough to play."
Winners and loser.
There are clear winners and losers emerging as Swiss cities and traders seek to profit from the business of cohosting the European Championship.
Officials in the capital city of Bern will set up a third giant TV screen to cope with an expected invasion of Dutch football fans this week.
Around 25,000 people turned the federal parliament square into a joyous sea of orange Monday evening to watch a free public screening of the Netherlands beating Italy, 3-0, at the nearby Stade de Suisse. A second broadcast in the city's Waisenhausplatz was also packed.
Bern mayor Alexander Tschaeppaet said yesterday that various options were looked at to welcome the arrival of even more Dutch supporters for tomorrow's game against France. Tens of thousands of people with almost no chance of getting into the stadium are expected to descend on Bern hoping to be part of the tournament fervor.
This is exactly what Swiss authorities were hoping for after seeing the success of public viewings in fan zones at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.