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Jozy Altidore hits out at ‘classless’ chants at Red Bull Arena

Following the U.S. Men’s National Team’s World Cup qualifying failure, Jozy Altidore knew the boos were coming. However, he was none too pleased with the treatment at Red Bull Arena on Monday night.

Altidore and Toronto FC teammate Michael Bradley were jeered and booed throughout Monday’s match, a 2-1 TFC win over the New York Red Bulls in Harrison. While many of the chants were just typical booing, Altidore differentiated by saying he was mostly frustrated by the vulgar chants directed at him throughout the match.

“Look, the World Cup, being disappointed that, I get, I understand,”  “But the other stuff is a bit disappointing. I never was disrespectful towards these people. It’s my first club, and I have so much admiration for the club. So that part is a big disappointing, but the World Cup stuff, I understand that.

“Nobody suffers, nobody loses more than the players,” Altidore added of missing the World Cup. “I get fans, they put a lot into it. We are nothing without our fans. But at the end of it, the biggest losers are the players and the program, not being able to further so much good work that we’ve done over the past 10 years.

“I thought it was a little bit classless, with a place I gave a lot to, and they gave a lot to me, had some good memories,” Altidore said. “But it is what it is. There’s no loyalty anymore. I guess all bets are off.”

Toronto FC and the New York Red Bulls face off on Sunday at BMO Field in the second leg of their Eastern Conference semifinal clash.


  1. i read most of the above comments. i think the most important ones center around the sentiments of ali dia and (“Does this justify anything? Anybody who has watched England play for the last 20 years knows has seen the terrible crisis of confidence their players suffer from when wearing the shirt. Sure it’s easy to say “they need to be mentally tougher” (and they should), but I don’t see how booing the players helps anything.”) and grow up (“Jozy, you know why the fans were booing so hard and giving you so much crap?
    Because they have passion for the game and for our team.
    What don’t you understand about that?”)

    i ‘get’ that fans have passion and they express it by booing sometimes, but i tend to side with jozie and ali dia on this one: sometimes, fans can go too far and be downright rude!

    • The point that I think is being missed here is it is possible for both sides to be wrong. We are all mad about the Trinidad game and have every right to be. I do not think booing these two guys is the right way to go about things though. What does that accomplish? It is just a mechanism to vent frustrations, and its pretty immature if you ask me.
      However, Jozy needs to understand he is going to be a target of criticism for a long time becuase of their failure in qualifying. He might not like it, but I guarantee his comments now make the criticism last longer and be even more pointed. This is the kind of opinion better left unsaid to the media. He really should have known better than to feed the mob by complaining in this way.
      Again, I think both parties are wrong.

  2. I have no problem with fans booing Jozy and Bradley as long as they also boo Howard, Gonzales (if he comes back to MLS) and Nagbe (seriously, people complain about Jozy being overrated and disappearing from games but not this Floyd Mayweather looking goon?).

  3. Jozy deserves most of the boos and some for Bradley for sleeping on the job like all the rest of the USNMT in the last T&T game except the 2 younger and fastest players. Jozy I have never liked because it is like playing with 10 men because he mainly stands around waiting for the perfect pass and right to his toes. Plus then he misses too many whenever the perfect pass gets to him. These ONE DIMENSIONAL STRIKERS are a wasted position and I rather like a striker like the retired Klose from the Deutschland team who was an all around player PLUS could shoot & head the ball very accurately.

  4. Funny how much better Jozy and Bradley look when not played in a formation straight out of 1998.

    Seemed to be something more than just boos that Jozy had a problem with if they were shouting expletives all game that’s probably not necessary and obviously if it was anything racially charged. If Jozy had asked me I would have probably told him to let it go.

    • Seemed to be something more than just boos that Jozy had a problem with if they were shouting expletives all game that’s probably not necessary and obviously if it was anything racially charged

      Is there any confirmation to racial epithets being used or is everyone clinging to the (intentionally) ambiguous statements made by Altidore? I’m utterly tired of the race card being played when it’s not true, as I am people freely throwing around racism when it is.

      Both are equally harmful, and the insinuations without proof is absurd. People need to stop unless there’s actual audio of such.

      • Read carefully I said “if” that’s not ok. Guess what racism in America is a live and well and just because you don’t hear the n word on a regular basis doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

      • You’re far too intelligent to insert racism where it’s not on the basis of “if”. As I said, “if” you have a video supporting that accusation, by all means, post it. Soccer, and the world have no place for such racist remarks/mentality.

        However, “if” you just assumed/accused (behind the “if” barrier) based on an ambiguous statement you’re as irresponsible as the racist who utter such ignorance. No one proclaimed to be in a utopia, but gust because you believe it may have been used in this situation doesn’t mean it existed in the first place without credible proof.

        Read this carefully: stop adding to the nonsense. There’s enough verifiable nonsense already.

  5. Well he may not have appreciated it, but I sure did! I smiled every time I heard the boos and joined in a few times. As a NYRB fan, I can say I am so happy that Sasha and Adams were not called in to the last round, because I am not sure I could have rooted for the team if they would have been part of the debacle in qualifying. Jozy goes back to his team, still gets paid his nice salary, and his soccer life goes on relatively undisturbed. USMNT fans are the ones who have no representation on the games’ biggest stage and will not see a meaningful game for more than two years. He and MB deserve the anger, and they both need to man up, take the pain, and let us do the healing we need to do to move on. btw, he definitely works harder for Toronto than he does for the Stars and Stripes (at least this year).

  6. Jozy- you are a soft, self-entitled guy who thinks too highly of your own abilities. You do a couple things well on the field, but suck at the rest- hence you don’t even deserve the title of soccer player. After watching your performance for the NATs, most of us loyal fans hope to never see you again in a NATs uniform. And we want you to understand that. Happy to hear fans booing him (and MB90) over their crap performance and results.

  7. Nice… showing passion for the game and the fact that they feel like the players on the field didn’t give their all or gave up so easily or didn’t deserve to be on the pitch in the first place

    Finally, fans letting players know that if you wear the colors of the Stars and Stripes you are held account for your actions on the field…..long after the final whistle

    KEEP IT UP!!!!!…..

  8. If Jozy had played with the intensity he had in this game when the US played Trinidad, I bet we would be thinking about the draw for Russia right now.

  9. I have no personal problem with Altidore, and feel like he gets more blame than deserved but this whiney-ass response to hearing people voice their (justified) displeasure is at the core of what’s wrong with our American player-pool.

    For the record: I’m all for fans continuing/endlessly booing the representatives that failed to qualify in our 23-man roster (with the exclusion of very few). It’s absolutely deserved, and our boys need a reminder of what pressure and failing professionally feels like (and sounds like) because they’ve obviously forgotten it within soft-ass/everyone-gets-a-trophy MLS.

  10. These comments are the epitomy of everything wrong with this current US team. And why his european career did not go as planned. SOFT and self entitled.

    Please, enlighten me – what did you give these fans when you were on the NYRB?

    Jozy, you know why the fans were booing so hard and giving you so much crap?
    Because they have passion for the game and for our team.
    What don’t you understand about that?

    You know what Jozy, these people are not only filling the seats to root on their team but making it known that you are no longer welcome. Good for them – I respect that heck out of that.
    (With the understanding that these chants were not racist, etc.If that’s the case, than different story)

    The federation propped these players up and the marketing behind that team made them think they were bigger than they are.

    I was at the CR game at Red Bull Arena.
    Makes me sick to my stomach thinking about that experience.
    The marketing, the Pulisic life sized card boards, the super lame Outlaws walk through of their chants before the game, all just so fn fake.
    Remember Rocky IV and the the pre fight antics of Apollo? Reminded me of that.

    I mean, what happened to the Outlaws?
    Their effort was as good as the team’s this qualifying season.
    They seem like they were on Sunil’s payroll.

    What’s the matter – couldn’t outdo “I believe….”?

    Makes me sick thinking about anything to do with the USMNT.
    Been a die hard supporter for a couple of decades.

  11. Brad Friedel noted that in 1994 after the English team failed to qualify, anytime a national team player stepped on the pitch, regardless of the stadium, he was heartily booed. I see nothing wrong with that. The US team failed to qualify because of lack of effort, not lack of quality. Not every player was guilty, but too many were and that includes Altidore.

    • Does this justify anything? Anybody who has watched England play for the last 20 years knows has seen the terrible crisis of confidence their players suffer from when wearing the shirt. Sure it’s easy to say “they need to be mentally tougher” (and they should), but I don’t see how booing the players helps anything.

  12. Haha, that’s part of the game…. Did they do racial chants, etc? If so, then that is absolutely uncalled for…If about the team missing out on the World Cup, Jozy has to own up and man up… Sounds like he let them get into his head… That shows a sign of mental weakness

    • Exactly. Jozy sounds like one of those people that want little league fans who can only cheer for their team and never against the other team.
      If it’s not racist or anything like that then what can you complain about?
      You’re not there playing for the US, you’re there representing Toronto’s MLS team, so it’s natural that NY fans are going to want to get in your head.

      I’ll take his paycheck and you guys can scream what you want at me for 90 minutes.

  13. I agree with Jozy. Sure, the fans have a right to be upset. But get over it, the real losers are the players. The fans will move on and find another team to cheer for. I still can’t wait for the World Cup despite the USA not being there.

    • Real fans of the national team will not be looking for another team to support. If they do, it won’t even closely approximate cheering for your NT

    • Huh? They aren’t real supporters if they should just ‘get over it’. I don’t know where you’re from, but that’s not supporting. Fans suffer more, because they can’t affect the outcome directly. The players made their bed, they should have to sleep in it and accept the criticism. That’s what professionals all over the world do, but we’ve created such a soft culture here, that these players turn into marshmallows. They don’t compete hard anymore, and get run off the pitch when a team actually challenges them physically and tactically. That’s not just a result of the players on the pitch, but the system.

      • I can only assume that you are on the younger side, Mac. Once you have had a chance to experience a serious disappointment in your professional life, you will realize how ridiculous this “fans have it worse” argument is.

      • Way to make assumptions and generalizations. I’ve experienced disappointment as a collegiate athlete AND in my professional career. I’ve also experienced criticism, and when it’s earned, I take it and utilize it. I don’t bitch and complain, because I knew what I signed up for when I signed the scholarship / contract.

      • I apologize for making any assumptions, Mac. (though for the record, I’d guess you’re about 25. Nobody over 30 still talks about their college scholarship or uses CAPS to make a point). Regardless, you didn’t address the absurdity of your point — that the “fans have it worse”. You clearly haven’t experienced a disappointment that might define your professional career, corrupt your legacy, or deprive you of your (perhaps final) opportunity to achieve at the thing you have dedicated your life to, in front an audience of countless millions globally. If any fan “has it worse” than that, I’d say they need to pay more attention to the rest of their existence.

      • Ali Dia, I love how you apologize for making assumptions and generalizations, and then follow that up with my more assumptions and generalizations. Thank you for my daily dose of laughter,it is very much appreciated. I’ll address your rebuttal to my initial statement, and I can understand your point of view. However, for a fan like myself, who has spent a large sum of money and time going to qualifiers, friendlies and tournament games both home and away, it is very, very difficult to not feel anger towards the individuals who could actually impact the outcome of these matches. It’s not all their fault, it’s mostly the culture and federation in this country who are to blame.

  14. I don’t understand Altidores point about loyalty. You left them to seek fortune and fame in Europe. Your weren’t loyal to them. Not sure what kind of loyalty he expects from the team he ditched.

  15. Last match of season the Atl United fans booed both Jozy and Bradley every time one of them touched the ball. Thought it would be just first half but happened all game, loud too. Jozy even cups his ear during his goal celebration to taunt the fans to be louder as if he can’t hear them.

    Hope more places boo these clowns. No intensity in TnT and most Hex games and then they can’t handle getting booed by the NT fans later. Had this happened in Mexico or Argentina or Europe booing would seem nice. If they had showed some effort and left it all on the pitch I don’t think they’d be getting booed but the lack of effort was evident and fans know they just didn’t want it.

    • Sophisticated take. No ex-girlfriend vibe at all.
      You have good ideas Joe Dirt. One of the few people posting here who actually suggests detailed solutions. And I’m pretty sure in six months when all of this poison is out of our systems, you will agree that “booing the players” is not one of them.

      • But ya, six/seven months from now I’ll be sitting at home trying to watch a WC match between two countries I don’t give a damn about.

    • The post-equivalent of an eclipse. I absolutely agree with you here. Far too many apologist fans, soft-players and feeble journalists in the soccer community.

      • Sorry we hold ourselves and our players to a higher standard. Stop making excuses. The whole system needs to purged, and you weaka** fans can go along with it. Sorry we don’t put these mediocre, soft players on a pedestal. The only two who played in TnT worth a damn are Pulisic and Yedlin.

    • Funny. My idea of a “hardcore fan” is a guy who attends multiple qualifiers and screams his lungs out for his team. Guys who throw tantrums on the internet are a dime a dozen.

  16. NJRBs supporters are largely jerks lacking any class. They were booing injured players like the one hit in the nuts by Felipe (who had to leave the game).

    I guess I would be salty too if had never accomplished anything as a club.

    • Yup. That Escobar CB for Colombia who owned-goaled it and knocked Colombia out of the playoff against the USA back in the day got shot. I don’t see anyone capping Omar Gonzalez.

      Sorry, Jozy and Michael didn’t get it done. If annoyed fans pointing that out offends them, Oh Well.

    • While I understand and concur with the point — other countries would most certainly be even more harsh — I still feel like it’s pretty lame that our fans are doing this. But I’d like to think we hold ourselves to a better standard. Would it be okay to throw bags of urine and vomit at opposing fans “just because Mexico does it”? I get that everyone is frustrated and looking for outlets… but this doesn’t really help anything. Just turns us into the same cynical crap that you see in entitled nations globally. I hope it dies down in a few months and we move on.
      But point taken– players need to have thicker skin.


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