clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

International Round-Up: Jozy On The Scoresheet

We take a look at how Sunderland's players got on in the latest round of international fixtures.

Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

Seven Sunderland players were in action during the latest round of international fixtures, with the stand-outs being Jozy Altidore getting himself on the scoresheet and Steven Fletcher coming up against John O'Shea.

Altidore scored from the spot, after Pablo Armero handled the ball, to put the USA 1-0 against Colombia at Craven Cottage after just 10 minutes:

The lead lasted until the hour mark when Carlos Bacca broke the offside trap, rounded Brad Guzan and slotted the ball into the empty goal. Teo Gutierrez, who had been linked with Sunderland during the last transfer window, then won it for the Colombians with three minutes left on the clock when he powered a header past the Aston Villa goalkeeper.

Despite the loss, Jurgen Klinsmann was full of praise for Altidore's performance and was hoping that Gus Poyet would take note;

All we can do is to keep our fingers crossed, that he can convince the coach. But it's not on us.

We know when he comes to us [the national team], he's full of energy, he loves the spirit here, he's one of our most experienced players.

And tonight, when he had more and more one-on-one situations, he proved that he can be a real handful.

Hopefully this helps him too, it gives him a little more confidence. This is the Jozy Altidore that we know.

Although clearly frustrated by his lack of playing time at Sunderland, Altidore refused to criticise the club or Poyet for his lack of playing time;

It is what it is.

I always feel honoured to have the opportunity to play for the national team.

I have nothing bad to say about my club, I have a good manager.

First team regulars Fletcher and O'Shea faced off in an important Euro 2016 Qualifying game between Scotland the Republic of Ireland. Both players started and although the Scots came out on top, it was bitter-sweet for Fletcher who was forced off with a knock after only 55 minutes following a tackle by Aiden McGeady. Speaking after the game, Gordon Strachan said he will not risk the striker for the derby clash against England on Tuesday;

We wouldn't be able to risk him, we wouldn't want to risk it for Sunderland.

We'll knock it on the head if he's walking out of here with protective boots on. There's no way we're going to try and play him against England.

Scotland won the game with 15 minutes to go thanks to a fine finish from Shaun Maloney, the win puts them level with Ireland and Germany in second place in Group D on seven points and all three trail the leads Poland by three points after four games.

The shock result of the round was the Faroe Islands winning 1-0 away to former European Champions Greece. Former Newcastle player Jóan Símun Edmundsson scored the winner, which turned out to be the Faroes' first competitive victory for over three years. Claudio Ranieri reacted to the goal by throwing on Charis Mavrias but to no avail as the underdogs pulled off a famous victory.

The result ended the reign of Ranieri, who only took over after the World Cup, as the Italian was sacked by the Greek FA following the defeat.

Seb Larsson came off the bench just after the hour mark for Sweden in their 1-1 draw at Montenegro in Group G. Zlatan Ibrahimovic had given the visitors a first half lead when he stabbed the ball home from close range, only for the hosts to earn a share of the spoils when Stevan Jovetic converted a penalty with 10 minutes remaining. That result was a blow to the Swedes who now trail leaders Austia by four points.

Santiago Vergini played the full 90 minutes as Argentina squeezed past a second string Croatia side 2-1 at Upton Park. Anas Sharbini had given the Croats the lead but the World Cup finalists came back to win it thanks to Cristian Ansaldi and a second half Lionel Messi penalty.

Finally, although Costel Pantilimon has forced his way in the starting line-up for Sunderland, the same cannot be said for Romania, where he was an unused substitute behind regular first choice goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu, as Romania seen off the challenge of surprise contenders in Group F Northern Ireland. Two Paul Papp goals ensured the Romanians ended the night 2-0 winners, a result which saw them leapfrog Northern Ireland into top spot in Group F.