Altidore: I Don’t Want To Go Back To Villarreal

U.S. national team star Jozy Altidore has admitted that he's looking for different options on the club level come next season.
JOHANNESBURG—In the wake of the United States’ 3-2 loss to Brazil in the Confederations Cup final, U.S. striker Jozy Altidore stressed the importance of the U.S. players’ playing for their club teams. Of the 23 players on the U.S. roster, only seven are regular starters in the top division of a European league.

“I think it’s important that we know wherever we’re going, whatever environment we’re in that we get playing time,” Altidore told Goal.com. “You can’t have guys coming in who haven’t played, like myself. We have to be ready to play. That was a bit tough towards the end of the tournament.”

The 19-year-old Altidore transferred last summer from the New York Red Bulls to La Liga side Villarreal for $10 million, a record for an American player. He played a sparingly for the Yellow Submarine in the fall before going on loan to second-division side Xerez. However, with Xerez pushing for the Segunda Division title and automatic promotion to the Primera Division, Altidore saw only a few minutes of playing time over the second half of the season.

His loan stint is up and he is now set to return to Villarreal. Whether he stays or not is unsure. However, Altidore was very clear about his own future with Villarreal.

“In my mind, I don’t really want to go back to Villareal,” he said, of the Yellow Submarines, with whom he only started two games. “I want to go play somewhere else.”

For Altidore, playing time is the most important aspect of his search for a new club. Which is why he also does not want a return to Spain's second division.

“I want to find a team where I’m going to play—simple,” he said. “I won’t go back to the Segundo division. I’m just looking for somewhere to play the whole year.”

Greg Lalas, Goal.com

For more on the Confederations Cup visit Goal.com's Confederations Cup page.