Sunday, August 7, 2011


Jozy Altidore scored on his Eredivisie debut as AZ Alkmaar opened their campaign with an impressive 3-1 win at home to PSV Eindhoven this afternoon.
The USA forward, signed from Villarreal in the summer, came off the bench to seal the victory in the 80th minute.
Goals from Maarten Martens and Nick Viergever had put AZ two up, but Dries Mertens pulled one back on the stroke of half-time. Altidore came on in the 65th minute to restore the hosts' two-goal cushion and even though they had Niklas Moisander sent off late on, PSV never appeared to have a comeback in them.
AZ went ahead in the 26th minute when Dirk Marcellis crossed from the left for Martens to drill the ball into the roof of the net at the far post.
They doubled their lead five minutes before the break when Viergever tried his luck from 25 yards and his shot proved too powerful for goalkeeper Andreas Isaksson, who got a hand to the ball but could not keep it out.
PSV halved the deficit just before the break as Mertens shot low into the corner from 12 yards and they could have gone into half-time level were it not for a good diving save from Esteban Alvarado to keep out Ola Toivonen's shot from 18 yards.
In the 65th minute when Viergever appeared to foul Georginio Wijnaldum in the area, but the referee waved away the appeals for a penalty.
And instead Altidore, hoping to revive his career after unsuccessful loan spells at Hull and Bursaspor, put AZ back in control as he headed home Adam Maher's cross.
AZ were reduced to ten men in the 82nd minute when Moisander was shown a second yellow card for pulling back Toivonen, but Mertens' shot saved by Alvarado in the final minute was as close as PSV came to scoring again.