New England: Is the Jozy Altidore experiment over already?

Jozy Altidore

The New England Revolution’s business in the Bruce Arena era has been rather hit-or-miss. There is a lot of success, as can be seen with the recent sales of Tajon Buchanan, Matt Turner and Adam Buksa. Arena reuniting with Jozy Altidore in New England didn’t quite go as well and it may well becoming to an end. The experienced forward has agreed a deal to join Mexican outfit Puebla on loan.

Jozy Altidore Leaves the Revolution on Loan

Where Did It All Go Wrong for Jozy Altidore in New England?

Altidore joined the defending Supporters’ Shield champions at the beginning of this season from Toronto FC. He arrived alongside Sebastian Lletget and Omar Gonzalez, the trio bringing mixed success to the table. Gonzalez has received a lot of stick for his calamitous performances at the back. Lletget on the other hand has been a good pick-up, adding a lot in the middle of the park.

“He will be going until January to Puebla FC, and Jozy initiated that loan” was what Bruce Arena had to say on the matter in his recent press conference. This is seemingly a case of a failed move with the former USMNT forward failing to make an impact. He has found the back of the net just once in his 589 minutes for the Revolution. This solitary goal came back in mid-March, in that infamous snow game versus RSL.

Rewinding back to late April and, prior to the visit of Inter Miami to Gillette Stadium, Arena was asked about Altidore and his general situation. “In the case of Jozy Altidore, the starting point in my mind, I’ve set a timetable of June to have him ready. We knew it was going to take some time, so he’s been working pretty hard over the last month or so to get fitter and a little bit sharper. He’s still working to overcome injuries from the past, and he’s getting there.”

This was the goal, for Altidore to be good to go come June. We have of course seen what he can do when at his best both in MLS and for the USMNT. It appears that he is past his best though because he has regularly struggled with injuries. In the meantime, when he has taken the field, there have been very few positives. The team haven’t been amazing in fairness but Altidore himself has looked below par more often than not.

Read MoreJozy Altidore speaks to the New England press for the first time

Mexico Beckons for Altidore

This nightmare is coming to an end, although it is only a loan move. Jozy Altidore may well return to the club in January and perform but for the time being, his focus is on his new chapter. Altidore will now go south of the border to play for Liga MX outfit Club Puebla.

There is a constant back-and-forth regarding the standings of these two rival leagues. Mexico and the national team were previously dominant but after a summer in which Gregg Berhalter led the US to Gold Cup and Nations League glory, times are changing. Given what Jozy Altidore showed in Massachusetts, the willingness for Puebla to take him on is fascinating indeed.

Returning attentions to the Revolution and it is now a case of two strikers out, one in. Of course Adam Buksa has secured his move to Ligue 1 side Lens whilst Albanian Giacomo Vrioni, his replacement, arrived from Juventus a week or two ago. This leaves Gustavo Bou and Vrioni, along with Justin Rennicks, although he hasn’t seen the field in a while. Bruce had the following to say regarding the potential of any more signings: “We’re considering making another move and we’ll just have to wait and see if we can finalize something over the next week or so.”

There is no doubting Jozy Altidore and his contribution to this sport. The issues seen in New England shouldn’t take away from what he has previously achieved in MLS, but this is a risk that has not paid off. Bruce and co invested big money and it has come back to bite them.

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