Sunderland’s Jozy Altidore shrugs off Burnley speculation

Jozy Altidore.
Jozy Altidore.
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SUNDERLAND striker Jozy Altidore has shrugged off suggestions that Burnley could be interested suitors in the January transfer window.

Altidore told reporters in America last week that he may have to consider his Sunderland future at the turn of the year, if he continues to be limited to a bit-part role at the Stadium of Light.

While Altidore has continually stressed this season that he understands his place in Gus Poyet’s plans, the 24-year-old has not started in the Premier League since March.

That prompted weekend reports that newly-promoted Burnley could be interested in the USA international, but the frontman insists he is unaware of any substance to that speculation.

“I have no idea,” Altidore told ESPN when asked about the Burnley talk.

“I never heard anything.”

At the start of the campaign, Altidore, currently with the USA squad ahead of tomorrow’s friendly against Honduras, was still making his way back from the hamstring injury which prematurely ended his World Cup participation.

But after returning to full fitness, Altidore’s only starts for Sunderland this season have come in the Capital One Cup.

Despite ending a nine-month goal drought against Stoke City last month, Altidore was an unused substitute in the subsequent two outings against Swansea and the Potters.

USA boss Jurgen Klinsmann has insisted that his players need to be featuring regularly for their clubs to keep their place in the national team set-up.

And after being handed the captain’s armband on a temporary basis, Altidore - linked with MLS outfit Colombus Crew during the summer - is clearly aware of his situation at Sunderland and the possibility of moving on in January.

“I thought I’ve done everything I could this season to come in as fit as possible with the injury and try to make an impact when I’ve played,” he said last week.

“But like I said, this four years I want to be part of the national team.

“Jurgen makes his message very clear, nobody is different, so if it doesn’t turn around then in January I’ll be looking to start elsewhere and make sure that I’m in his plans.”

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