If you haven’t been paying attention to the World Cup, it’s time to open your eyes and focus on the United States as they take on Belgium in the round of 16. The biggest headline leading up to the game will be the decision to play or not to play striker Jozy Altidore. Altidore strained his right hamstring in the World Cup opener against Ghana and has been unavailable to play since.
Nonetheless, the United States was finally cleared Altidore to play for his home country. From the moment the injury occurred, Team USA was extremely supportive of Altidore and it has shown in his quick recovery time.
Most recently, the Sunderland striker was seen practicing and condition with the team, but the news broke today that he will be available for head coach Jurgen Klinnsmann. The rest remains up to the bench coach, who will have a difficult decision on his hands, but the choice seems easy to play Altidore.
His speed and athleticism presents a unique challenge to opposing defenses that no other US player can provide. Also, it allows the team to return to their normal formation that allowed them to dominate World Cup qualifying. Still, fans can only speculate leading up to the game, but look for Altidore to be fully fit and ready to go for Team USA.