Sunderland's Jozy Altidore ends long-term goal drought with brace

Jozy Altidore

Jozy Altidore scored his first goals of the year in the USA's 2-1 win against Nigeria on Saturday and will now hope to add to his tally in Brazil.

The goal drought is over. At last. Jozy Altidore netted a brace in the USA's final game of their send-off series to the delight of every US and Sunderland fan alike.

The powerful forward had not scored a goal for club or country since December 4 last year and his much needed goal came in the 32nd minute of the game last night, and was one of the most celebrated international friendly goals ever seen.

Altidore will now be confident heading into the World Cup with the USA in this year's 'Group of Death' and he will need to supply some goals if they are to progress.

Speaking to ESPN about ending his goal drought Altidore said: "To be honest, it makes no difference.

"I don't know if it's weird to you, but it's not weird to me. I've played for this team for such a long time that I think it's my responsibility to kind of help the team in other ways, tracking back and just being somebody now that the other guys can look up to. And I take that very serious."

The 24-year-old joined Sunderland from AZ Alkmaar last summer after scoring 31 goals in all competitions with the Dutch side, but only managed to score twice with the Black Cats in a disappointing campaign that saw him relegated to the under-21 team in April.

  TeamPosAppsGoalsGoal AssistBig Chance MissedTotal Scoring Att / appsMins
Jozy Altidore Sunderland FW 31 1 1 5 0.94 1,776

The American got just one goal and one assist in the Premier League last season, and averaged less than one scoring attempt per game.

His poor form had put his World Cup hopes under threat, but Jurgen Klinsmann has kept faith in Altidore and he was rewarded last night.

His partnership with Clint Dempsey has the potential to produce plenty of goals in a very tough group and they will look to take their form into the tournament having won three from three in their preparation games.

Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard has heaped praised on the "fantastic" Altidore and says the striker is the Americans "horse" at the World Cup.

"He's our horse. We've made no bones about that. It's no secret, we have to ride him. He has to put us on his back and score some goals for us. He's shown he can score goals in bunches for us. Jozy is just fantastic. He just shows how he can turn it on."

 

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch