Jozy's Big Day

It's not Jozy Altidore's first goal in a Villarreal uniform:

But his goal yesterday against Besiktas led to a Villarreal win (forward to 5:05):

And it asks Sr. Roig and Juan Carlos Garrido a very important question: what is Jozy's future with Villarreal CF? El Periódico Mediterráneo rightfully highlighted Jefferson Montero, but the club site noted that Jozy was "very active in the game's final minutes." The game swung when Jozy came on for David Fuster in the 55th minute.

The contrasts are clear: Marco Ruben and David Fuster lack his strength, and Nilmar cannot match his pace. Jozy would fill Llorente's void, though Rossi will generally feature at center forward. But should Villarreal stunt his long-term development with spotty playing time at age 20? Not to mention his transfer value after South Africa.

Altidore looks to be motivated, fit, and battle-tested after the EPL and World Cup. His technical ability and attitude must improve, but with his raw talent, the sky's the limit. Another loan deal makes sense, waiting for Rossi or Nilmar to leave next summer, but an option to buy may push him out the door for good. Montero at winger means that David Fuster is Jozy's competition for the fourth striker position. So I'm hoping for a Fuster loan deal (Levante? Hércules?) or for Garrido to carry 5 forwards.

If Jozy stays, he will begin as a change of pace substitute. However, if he cannot crack this season's roster, both sides may wish to part. The club should recoup most (if not all) of his $10 million transfer fee, and Altidore needs to grow before Brazil 2014. Logic says that he should stay, but money and squad size disagree. What do you think?

Winners from yesterday:

  • Jozy Altidore. Has a role as a true center forward. Poacher's goal.
  • Rubén Cani. A goal, an assist, and lots of fouls received. Doing his job.
  • Jefferson Montero. Explosive. Brilliant assist, laying Cani's volley on a platter.

Losers:

  • David Fuster. Creates? Yes. Finishes? No. Has a role on the team? Maybe.
  • Carlos Marchena. 10% out of form. Just a post-South Africa layoff? I think so.
  • Nilmar. Also a bit off. May need Rossi to be comfortable.
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