US Men’s National Team forward Jozy Altidore once again failed to make an impact, despite his Sunderland side beating Manchester United on penalties to progress to the Capital One Cup final.
With 2014 being a World Cup year, all eyes in the USA are on those making an aim for a place on the USMNT squad. Altidore is no certainty for a place in the lineup. His performances this season for Sunderland, since arriving in the summer, have been below par. Against United it was more of the same, nothing promising.
His fresh legs were brought on just before both sides embarked on extra time. But his highlights were more embarrassing than anything to boast about. He made a woeful attempt of a dive with Sunderland looking for a goal late on. For a man of his size, it was fairly obvious you don’t fall down in a heap due to an arm touching you; yet, Altidore clearly believed otherwise.
Apart from that, his movement didn’t even really stretch United’s defense and had you had no prior knowledge, you may have believed he too had played 90 minutes as extra time began. As a man who could have exploited the lack of energy in the United players bodies, it was a poor effort.
He has a lot to work on, we know he isn’t blessed with incredible ability. But this season has been a dismal time for Altidore with just one goal in 20 Premier League games for Gus Poyet‘s team.
But in all fairness, he is in a major cup final in his first season in England and the chance is there to achieve something magical. He gets his fair share of criticism and needs support, but also a reality check, which is to be better more street wise and improve.