Jozy Altidore, 22, has always handled himself publicly as a man beyond his years.
So we probably should not be surprised to see the U.S. international react with such diplomacy and composure after Tuesday’s ugliness, when he was the subject to racist taunts from Den Bosch.
In this video link from the Dutch Cup, Altidore says the episode was obviously disappointing, but that he has “an obligation as a football player, to my club and to my family as well, to not react to things like this, to show that the club stands for more than that and that I was raised better than that.”
That’s a poised, stand-up response – especially when few would have blamed him for being a little less a restrained.
Further, from a statement released Tuesday night by his representative, Altidore said:
Obviously, what happened today outside the field of play was very unfortunate. It was disappointing for my team, our fans who traveled to the match to support us and for the Den Bosch supporters embarrassed by the select, ignorant few in attendance. But unfortunately, this is still the way things are. Racism remains prevalent in the world. The only thing you can pray for is a positive outcome from situations like these. You hope parents and coaches of young, impressionable athletes — not just soccer players — are told that what happened today isn’t right. It is never acceptable.”