Jozy Altidore says he will be ready for MLS Cup final despite ankle injury

The U.S. national team striker is determined to be in the lineup in Saturday’s MLS Cup final despite the ankle injury he suffered a week ago

When Jozy Altidore limped off the bench to celebrate Toronto FC’s return to the MLS Cup final last week, it looked like he might be dealing with an ankle injury that could cost him a place in the final. One week later, Altidore says he will be ready to go when Saturday’s MLS Cup final rematch with the Seattle Sounders kicks off.

“It was good. I got to take part in the warm up and see how I was feeling. I felt okay,” Altidore told reporters during a conference call on Tuesday when asked about the injury. “Obviously, it won’t be perfect, but like I said on Wednesday night, it’s a big game, a one-off, and, with everything we put into this season, I’m going to put every right foot forward I can to make sure I’m in the team and playing that game.”

Altidore suffered the ankle injury during TFC’s Eastern Conference finals second leg against the Columbus Crew, going down in pain after Harrison Afful fell on his right ankle. Altidore shook off the pain long enough to score the series-winning goal. He left the match shortly after scoring the goal, and could be seen heavily favoring the injured ankle after the match.

The injury won’t be fully healed by the time Saturday’s MLS Cup final rolls around, but Altidore is determined to make sure it doesn’t keep him from being a part of helping TFC lift its first MLS Cup.

“I would love to try to make a difference. I think every player would love to make a difference,” Altidore said. “It’s a final. Every player goes to bed dreaming about a final and dreaming about yourself making the difference.”

“For me, though, it doesn’t matter. Obviously it would be great to score in a final but, at this point, it doesn’t matter how we win,” Altidore said. “What matters is that we win. I don’t care of its me or (Sebastian Giovinco) or Drew Moor. It doesn’t matter to me. All that matters is that we give everything we have, put everything into it and try to become champions.”

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