Altidore left off U.S. roster for World Cup qualifiers

U.S. Team training in Miami

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NEW YORK - Boca Raton's Jozy Altidore was dropped Monday from the U.S. roster for critical World Cup qualifiers, and Landon Donovan was among the 24 players selected despite injuring his left knee last weekend.

Altidore has nine goals in 10 games this season for AZ Alkmaar in the Netherlands and is tied for the Dutch league lead with eight goals, but had little impact during two qualifiers against Jamaica last month.

"I communicated with Jozy that I was not happy about his latest performances with us, maybe even over the last 14 months,'' Klinsmann said during a conference call. "I think Jozy can do much, much better and the reason why he's not coming in is mainly about the performances in Jamaica and at home, also in training. Also certain things that went on through the May-June camp.''

Earlier, Klinsmann was critical of Altidore in an interview that ran Sept. 28. Altidore, according to multiple reports, responded with a tweet, which since has been removed: "Love when people try to blame others for their own short comings and incompetence.''

Klinsmann said he didn't know whether that was directed to him.

The 22-year-old Altidore has 13 goals in 51 international appearances but none since November's exhibition at Slovenia. He arrived late at the May-June camp when his club cited FIFA regulations and blocked him from reporting on time.

The Americans are training in Miami this week, play at Antigua and Barbuda on Friday and then host Guatemala on Oct. 16 at Kansas City, Kan. The U.S. figures to need a win and a tie to advance to next year's six-nation regional finals, which will produce three qualifiers for the 2014 tournament in Brazil.

Donovan was injured Saturday night, leaving the Los Angeles Galaxy's game with 10 minutes remaining. Klinsmann said Donovan told him the knee felt better and he was reporting to the national team Monday.


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