AMIDST the enthusiasm, relief and yes, cynicism which Jermain Defoe’s signing has already prompted, the imminent departure of Jozy Altidore should not be overlooked.
Despite becoming a contemporary equivalent of Nyron Nosworthy as a fun figure on the terraces, Altidore desperately needed to leave the Stadium of Light this month.
Sunderland will have effectively got the US international’s hefty wages off the books and brought in a proven goalscorer as the replacement.
Fittingly, as the Americans say: “Good job”.
It’s a move that suits all parties.
Altidore never remotely threatened to settle at Sunderland after his £7million move from AZ Alkmaar and the latest glaring miss against West Ham last month banished the last remaining hope of him turning the corner.
The 25-year-old was leaving team-mates and coaching staff exasperated and needed to move on.
And while ideally, Altidore would have liked to remain in Europe, a return to the MLS offers him the chance to restore his reputation on the other side of the Atlantic.
He will be given hero status in the MLS, can score goals, play regularly and perhaps one day come back to one of the European leagues, although probably not the Premier League.
After a miserable 18-months, Altidore and Sunderland have parted ways on mutually beneficial terms.