Last season wasn’t Jozy Alitdore’s best soccer campaign by any means, as the U.S. national team forward scored only two goals in 39 caps in all competitions.
But after getting on the score sheet this season on Tuesday, burying an audacious strike from outside the box in the Black Cats 2-1 defeat to Stoke City, Altidore has called out himself and his entire team, in order to set a focused tone for Saturday’s Premier League fixture against Swansea City.
In 2013-14, Sunderland finished at 14th place, and right now, they stand about one point from relegation in the 17th spot following five winless league matches.
Altidore didn’t attack his team’s form; instead, he spoke of gaining and retaining consistent efforts over coming games.
“We need to be tougher. It is too easy sometimes,” Altidore said, per Goal.com. “All of us – strikers, everyone – have to be nastier; make sure, when people play us, they have to really work for it. We have played fairly well, but now we have to get the first win. We don’t want the shadows of last year following us around this season.
“We have had a decent start and now, with the home schedule we have, we have to take three points. There is room for improvement. We have to play better. It was nice to score this week but I was not worried about anything anyway. I continue to go about my business and try to get into the team.”