Advertisement

'I'll play,' Jozy Altidore says despite ankle injury ahead of MLS Cup final

'I'll play,' Jozy Altidore says despite ankle injury ahead of MLS Cup final
From ESPN - December 7, 2017

TORONTO -- Toronto FC striker Jozy Altidore was emphatic in his belief that he will be able to play in Saturday's MLS Cup final against the Seattle Sounders (4 p.m. ET, ESPN/WatchESPN), despite an injury to his right ankle.

Speaking at Thursday's news conference, Altidore was succinct in his responses about his injury, which occurred in the second leg of the Eastern Conference finals against the Columbus Crew.

"Yeah, I will play," he said. When asked if he thought he would be pain-free by Saturday, Altidore said, "It does not matter."

Toronto will try to claim MLS Cup for the second year running, having fallen on penalties last year to the Sounders. But captain Michael Bradley is of the belief that this is a different Seattle team, with Clint Dempsey fully recovered from a heart ailment that forced him to miss the final last year, as well as new additions like Will Bruin.

"Clint enters into the equation in a big way, in terms of his ability to make goals and set up goals, to turn plays that seem like nothing into danger," said Bradley. "Obviously [Nico] Lodeiro is a guy that collectively we are going to have to do a really good job on. His ability to float around the field, to find space and find balls is very good. Will Bruin has been a very important guy for them in this last stretch and been in good form. Then we will see. We will see how they complement those guys around them in terms of who's on the field and in what spots. But it's a very good team and collectively we will have to be at our best to make sure we can make things hard on them."

Toronto manager Greg Vanney said he thinks Saturday's match will be cagey for at least the first few minutes given that neither team will want to expose their respective defense too much. But he's confident his side can test the Seattle defense in a way that previous playoff opponents did not.

Advertisement

Continue reading at ESPN »