KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Jozy Altidore made an impression in his first return to the United States’ starting lineup.
Altidore scored on an overhead kick in his first start for the national team in 20 months, lifting the U.S. over Panama 1-0 Wednesday night as the Americans finished first in their CONCACAF Gold Cup group.
Altidore got the goal from 2 yards following a corner kick in the 66th minute that was redirected by Matt Miazga. Coming back from a hamstring injury that slowed him at the start of training camp, the 29-year-old Altidore scored his 42nd goal in 113 international appearances.
Altidore scores to give @USMNT the lead!!! #USAPAN | #GoldCup pic.twitter.com/0b5HZ6wvEP
— Seattle Sounders FC (@SoundersFC) June 27, 2019
After the match, he walked by reporters and did not stop to respond to questions.
The defending champion United States went 3-0 in group play and outscored opponents 11-0. The 30th-ranked Americans play No. 79 Curacao in the quarterfinals at Philadelphia on Sunday, and the winner faces Jamaica or Panama in the semifinals.
“This is a team we can’t take lightly,” U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter said. “We’re going to go in fully prepared. They have talent. They can score goals.”
The plus-11 goal difference was the best in the Gold Cup for the Americans, topping plus-nine in 2013. The Americans did not allow a goal in a three-match group stage for the second time, the first since 2007, and improved to 36 wins, one loss and four draws in the Gold Cup group stage.
“I talked to Jozy at halftime and asked how much more he had in him,” …read more