0 shots, 0 key passes: Sunderland's Jozy Altidore can't produce as exit looms

Jozy Altidore

Jozy Altidore was handed a rare start for Sunderland's trip to Liverpool on Saturday, but the much-maligned striker failed to answer his critics.

Sunderland came away from Liverpool with a 0-0 draw on Saturday afternoon, in a match which marked Jozy Altidore’s first Premier League start of the season for the Black Cats.

The American striker’s struggles in the north east have been well-documented at this point, having scored just three times in 50 total appearances since arriving from AZ Alkmaar last summer and now found himself behind both Connor Wickham and Steven Fletcher in the pecking order.

Earning just eight brief league outings for a total of 152 minutes this season prior to the weekend, the 25-year-old front man is also widely expected to be leaving the Stadium of Light in the New Year, with French club Lille said to be the front-runner for his signature.

With Fletcher not ready to start at Anfield after his recent back injury, however, the former MLS star was given a rare chance to prove his worth, but things once again didn’t go to plan.

  Total ShotsTotal Key PassesAerial Duels WonAerial Duel SuccessTotal DribblesSuccessful DribblesTotal PassesPassing AccuracyTouchesUnsuccessful TouchesDispossessedMins Played
Jozy Altidore 0 0 8 88.89% 1 0 26 73% 39 4 4 70

While Altidore proved effective in the air, his top-flight goal drought extended to 28 games, as he failed to muster a shot or create a chance for a teammate during his 70 minutes on the pitch.

It didn’t help that he was isolated up top for long stretches but, despite attempting to keep the Liverpool defence on their toes with tireless running, the US international too often wasted possession or didn’t look strong enough on the ball – concerning for someone of his size.

It remains to be seen how many more opportunities he will get to impress between now and January, but his latest performance isn’t likely to have changed Gus Poyet’s mind on a rumoured sale.

With fears that Connor Wickham could leave this winter also allied, following reports that the forward is set to sign a new deal, Altidore’s 18-month stint with the Mackems could well be coming to an end next month.

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