U.S. Men's Olympic Team

Altidore agrees to terms with Villarreal, to be introduced on Wednesday


                                                                       Photo by ISIPhotos.com

Jozy Altidore’s reported $10 million move to Villarreal is closer to completion.

Altidore reached an agreement on personal terms with Villarreal on Tuesday and is set to sign a six-year deal with the Spanish Premier League club, sources told SBI on Tuesday. He will be introduced as Villarreal’s newest signing at a press conference on Wednesday, after passing a physical and signing his new contract.

There are no details available on the sum of Altidore’s new deal but it is safe to say it is significantly higher than the $108,333 he was due to make for the Red Bulls for the entire 2008 season.

Altidore becomes the fourth Red Bulls/MetroStars player to transfer to Europe, joining fellow U.S. national team players Tim Howard and Michael Bradley as well as Haitian striker Peguero Jean Philippe.

Altidore’s transfer to Villarreal will become official on July 1, when the European transfer window formally opens.

Altidore is expected to be loaned out to a smaller La Liga club for the 2008/2009 season, with Recreativo Huelva the most likely destination for the 18-year-old American striker.

For those of you who missed it, here is my story on Altidore’s move to Villarreal on ESPN.com. Talk about a whirlwind two years and change for Altidore. Who could have imagined that his career would take off so fast?

Okay, so maybe I did see this coming back when he was drafted (okay, so maybe not this fast). I wrote that Josmer Altidore would be a star and he’s well on his way.

What do you think about Altidore’s departure? Sad to see him go? Excited to see how he progresses playing in a competitive league like the Spanish Primera? Eager to see him take Giuseppe Rossi’s job?

Share your thoughts below.

  • mikeK

    As a Red Bull fan, let’s just get this done with…

    As a USMNT fan, here’s to improvement.


  • Josh

    Congrats, Jozy! Keep your head down, work hard, learn from the veterans, get better, and have a phenomenal career!!

    Now who will the Red Bulls sign to replace him???


  • Mack

    Gotta say, what you wrote back in 2006 looks quite phophetic now. This is why you are one of the very best in the business, my friend.


  • Harar

    Congrats Jozy for finally playing on a real team instead of a Soft Drink Team in Minor League Soccer


  • Tony in Quakeland

    Are the MetroStars/Red Bulls the Seattle Mariners of MLS? Seattle developed Griffey Jr., A-Rod and the Big Unit…and got sweet FA out of it.

    Switch sports and NY watches Howard, Bradley and now Altidore go on to (presumed) greatness elsewhere.


  • Dillon

    Yeah that is a sick prediction. I think perfectly spot on with 3 goals in 2006.



    Good call on that Sacha guy.He’s doing a’ight.

    That Guevara trade will go down as the WORSE TRADE IN THE HISTORY OF THE MLS.

    Damn. We could use that DP right about now.

    We also got Bornstein in this draft. another good pick up.


  • Kevin

    Wow someone already added Altidore to the “Current Star Players” section on La Liga’s Wikipedia article….I mean, he’s good, but come on!


  • Dro Scott

    i love how Chivas ended up with a player they “weren’t hoping for” in Sacha Kljestan.


  • Joamiq

    Wow Ives – I knew you were good, but those were some damn fine predictions.


  • Tom in Newark

    I may not have known him from Adam when he was drafted; but the first time I saw him play, there was no doubt he would be a star.

    Great move for him. He will learn alot in an environment where skill is emphasized above all else.


  • kpugs

    Sad and excited as most of us probably are. What I really want to know is if he’ll even play for the Red Bulls again (if he is healthy obviously). And not just because I’d like to give him a sendoff…we legitimately need every game we can get out of him until July.

    Unfortunately it wouldn’t surprise me in this day and age if part of this deal was to hold him from playing until July 1.


  • Soccer Guru

    Who cares?

    This guys isn’t even good enough to make vaunted manager Bob Bradley’s 21 man qualifying squad.


    Obviously massive news even if the national team manager likes Eddie Johnson and Brian Ching better. At least Johnson can hold the ball with his back to goal. Ching can do absolutely nothing on the national team level.


  • ag nigrin

    Guru…Jozy was injured recently and is not match fit and Villareal don’t want damaged goods… so stop laughing and lose the Guru part to your handle ’cause you ain’t one.


  • ag nigrin

    Kpugs… Jozy is gone and will not play for the BUlls again… his parting gift… the lone goal vs Las Chicas!


  • Bootsy

    The third RB/Metro player to transfer to Europe? I thought there’d been more than that. What about Jean Philippe Peguero?


  • Dan (18)-mamaroneck ny

    there was mathis too….but anyway good luck jozy in spain! is he there right now? i assume so if they will introduce him.


  • brett

    Soccer Guru- you’re an idiot…as ag nigrin posted, he’s still “injured”… there is NO reason to play Jozy in this game…. that’s all we need is some crappy players taking swipes at Jozy b/c of the moves he’d put forth…. i truely enjoy it when people try to be funny and just made to look like an A$$


  • brett

    Soccer Guru- i forgot…while EJ and CHing may not be stellar forwards, and would have difficulty scoring against teams of Mexico’s caliber, they will get the job done against Barbados… and in all honesty that is exactly what we need done…


  • RK

    Funny that their web site in other languages isn’t promoting the Jozy signing. 6:00 pm (noon EST) for the unveiling.


  • Cameron Schulten

    I thought Guru was being sarcastic. anyway bets fo luck jozy, develop into the player we all know you can be


  • brett

    Cameron Schulten- it was sarcasm, but it was still a cheap shot on BB…. and an unwarrented cheap shot seeing as no coach couldve called him up….


  • Matt Mathai

    Do these contracts include clauses about whether a player can continue to play for his old club? I don’t know how that could be enforced, but I’d think a club would want to protect an asset it had just laid out $10 million for.

    Just wondering if Jozy would play for NYRB again even if he healed.


  • Will

    I visited the largest Villarreal forums yesterday to get a sense of how Jozy’s new fans are looking at their new signing. It didn’t come as too much of a surprise that they are looking at this transfer with a large amount of cynicism. Many fans there (as has been the case with many US players transferring to new players) believe that this has little more to do with than the club trying to sell jerseys and ratings to the Americans. It’s infuriating to read their comments, but once the initial frustration subsided, I could, to some extent, understand their cynicism with this transfer. First, we do not have any players currently in Spain (Szetela is currently loaded out to Brescia in Italy). Secondly, MLS, for as much as many of us really want to see it improve and succeed, is still not there. Thirdly, though our US team has continued to develop at a rapid pace, we are still rightfully seen as a third tier internationally team with the ability to play above ourselves at times. Of course, for any of you who spend any time at all outside our borders, there’s no doubt in my mind that their inability to outright embrace this transfer is certainly affected by our current political standing in the int’l community (thanks to our current administration).

    Looking forward, there’s nothing more I’d like to see than Jozy succeed. But we should understand that while we’re ready to optimistically send our best youngsters (at times over-investing), the world is not necessarily ready to welcome them. It will be a tough journey for Jozy, not only to develop personally but also to change minds that are also so cynically rooted.


  • Will

    A lot of spelling and grammatical mistakes there….sorry. Still waiting for the first cup of coffee to settle in.


  • Miguel


    The most fascinating tidbit on you old “Altidore is going to be a star” story is that former Chivas USA coach Bob Bradley coveted forward Yura Movsisyan (Who???) but settled for for Sacha Kljestan, when Movsisyan was taken by KC in the 2006 draft. Ha, ha!


  • NOLA soccer fan

    Thats awesome for alitdore. he needed to move on up to the next level, and the spanish fans need to stop complaining. they are getting the best american striker hands down.

    the best thing about this is that altidore will get more refinement in La Liga, and lead to bob bradley to stop calling up EJ…that is if bob can stop calling up EJ.


  • j1m

    Wonder what Bruce Arena’s doing these days? He’s posting on the internets under handle of Soccer Guru.


  • Ives

    Guys, Peguero was the fourth Red Bull to leave via transfer to Europe. Mathis left after his contract ran out. I was thinking more of homegrown players when I originally wrote that note.


  • Haig

    Ives, Shaun Bartlett was sold to FC Zurich, after an initial loan deal. So that’s another Metrostars player who was sold overseas, even if the loan made things slightly less direct.


  • Haig

    And I believe there was a transfer fee paid for Donadoni when he went back to AC Milan. Again, obviously not a home-grown player.


  • Ryan

    Will, please with the (thanks to our current administration) If I wanted to be filled with liberal jargon I wouldn’t be looking on a soccer website. However I understand your point, many other nations look down upon us for one reason or another, and you are probably correct that those currently running the show haven’t helped America’s reputation. BUT, I can assure you that their view was ONLY reinforced by what they have seen unfold, most if not all looked at America with a negative connotation even before this whole mess. NOW, back to the good stuff, I’m sure the Spanish are skeptical, I AM TOO, don’t get me wrong I desperately want this to go well (Jozy dominating in Spain with an eventual move to the England), but @ the same time I have learned through years of watching that American’s just can’t seem to get a serious foothold in large European league…


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