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Gooch, Really Will Play for Peanuts

Salty PeanutOguchi Onyewu has decided to do something that contradicts everything I thought I knew about professional athletes.

In the days of guaranteed contracts, long holdouts, and trade demands, Oguchi Onyewu has decided to play for one free season for AC Milan.

Yes, you read that last sentence right.

Now I have heard of great deals before, but this one takes the cake.  In fact can you name one other instance this remarkable in modern day sports that didn’t include a guy worth over 100 million dollars?

Now plenty of athletes have pulled off the reverse of this and received money for minutes they didn’t play.  And sports fans everywhere have an athlete they wished didn’t receive a paycheck at all, but to do something this unselfish seems almost wrong in the context of modern day sports.

They say you can’t get much with a buck anymore, but in the case of Onyewu’s mentality a dollar might get you an entire team.  Apparently Gooch has decided to reward AC Milan with this strange deal due to the guilt that the center back feels for being unable to play this season due to a serious knee injury.  Gooch didn’t play one regular season minute for the Italian giants in his first of a two year deal, so Gooch’s free season of work will begin in 2011 and run through 2012 with Milan.

The deal will give Onyewu one more season to prove himself in Italy which is obviously something he covets more then any monetary value of a new deal with a new team.

It is one of the stranger deals done in the history of football, but a national team starting center back sure beats a free ring tone in overall value.  It’s a tremenous tale to hear unless your Onyewu’s agent ofcourse.

In the case of Oguchi Onyewu, “Don’t show me the money.”   

Creative Commons License photo credit: EuroMagic