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Jozy from Midfield, and Other Preseason Highlights

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I know I have been on a bit of an Altidore kick this last week or two, but what can I say? He is lighting it up in Navata. In fact, on Saturday, Jozy scored from midfield in a scrimmage. And, because of his play, he is gaining the respect of those around him. Pires called him a "crack", saying he expects Jozy to be one of the "revelations of the league", and that he has the quality to succeed in Europe. High praise from a player who has been around long enough to know what he is talking about. Sunday will be his last day with the club before joining up with the US Olympic squad.

Plenty of non-Jozy news has been going on with Villarreal as well. The club is preparing for its first friendly of the preseason, this one against Navata at noon local time. Needless to say, Villarreal should not have too much trouble with the lower-tiered matchup (at least, not as much as Atletico!).

Great news on the injury front: both Mati and Fuentes got scrimmage action today, after being held out earlier in the week. Although they probably will not play Sunday, it is a good sign for the club that they are returning to form.

And finally, although it should surprise no one, Pellegrini was named by Marca as Coach of the Year for 2007-2008 in La Liga.