USMNT vs Ecuador: 5 Takeaways From Friendly

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Jun 28, 2014; Sao Paulo, BRAZIL; USA forward Jozy Altidore (left) jogs with a trainer during team training at Sao Paulo FC. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

2. Jozy Altidore: Missed Him More Than We Thought

This friendly was a perfect example as to why Altidore was so important to the USMNT’s success at the World Cup. His hold up play and ability to distribute the ball was spot on. He played an absolutely stellar game. At the 2104World Cup, we did not have a player capable of playing striker the way Altidore does.

This friendly was a perfect example of what Altidore is truly capable of. His hold up play was exceptional, and his ability to find the second run was fantastic. His ball to Donovan (the one where Donovan hit the post) was a great ball, one where Altidore held the ball up and looked for the second run, not the first one to pick out. His ball sent Donovan in on goal, but unfortunately did not lead to a goal.

I hope if Altidore’s club situation does not improve by January, that he looks for and finds another place to play. For the USMNT to be successful with Altidore on the field, they need him playing like he did against Ecuador, and that will only come with a consistent starting spot on his club team. Altidore has shown the quality he can bring to the striker position, but now he just needs to find that spot on his club career.

Look for Altidore to be on the move if his time at Sunderland does not improve. This will only help the USMNT for the future.