WATCH: Chris Wondolowski smashes Landon Donovan's MLS all-time goals record

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San Jose Earthquakes players mob forward Chris Wondolowski, who became the top goal scorer in MLS history in Saturday's 4-1 win over the Chicago Fire. (Jeff Chiu/AP)
San Jose Earthquakes players mob forward Chris Wondolowski, who became the top goal scorer in MLS history in Saturday's 4-1 win over the Chicago Fire. (Jeff Chiu/AP)

San Jose Earthquakes forward Chris Wondolowski scored his 145th and 146th MLS regular season goals in Saturday’s match against the Chicago Fire, breaking American soccer great Landon Donovan’s league record. Then, as if to celebrate the achievement, he added two more in the 4-1 rout.

Wondolowski’s second tally was the history-maker. And just like the three others he converted on the day, it was also just the sort of opportunistic strike that the 36-year-old has built his unlikely career on.

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With his team leading 1-0 early in the second half on his record-equaling 21st minute strike, Wondolowski pounced on on a mistake by Fire goalkeeper David Ousted, who dropped a cross that an alert Wondolowski quickly deposited into the net:

The leveler was also a classic poacher’s delight, as Wondolowski found space at the back post to redirect a pass from Shea Salinas past a helpless Ousted:

“Wondo,” as he is affectionately known by teammates, fans and media alike, completed his hat trick with more than a quarter-hour remaining when he finished off a chance created by Cristian Espinoza’s strong run though the midfield:

Minutes later Wondolowski added his fourth — by once again by exploiting some poor defending by the visitors and anticipating where to be and when to be there to merely tap the ball home:

While Donovan was a child prodigy whose success in the domestic league came to the surprise of nobody, his fellow Californian was anything but a blue-chipper. After a standout college career at Division II Chico State, Wondolowski was selected by San Jose with the 41st pick of the MLS Supplemental Draft in 2005 and struggled mightily early in his professional career.

He scored just seven times in 53 appearances over his first five seasons with the Quakes and the Houston Dynamo. He returned to San Jose in 2009 and enjoyed a breakout campaign a year later, leading the league with 18 goals. Over the rest of the decade, the Bay Arena native transformed himself into the most prolific MLS striker of all time.

Wondolowski has also scored 11 times for the United States men’s national team and represented his country at the 2014 Word Cup in Brazil.

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