Tuesday August 30th, 2011

If only Jozy Altidore and Robbie Findley had found this kind of form 15 months ago.

The starting strikers from the United States' 2010 World Cup team have found themselves in favorable club situations, and the goals are starting to pour in as a result.

Altidore is endearing himself to the AZ Alkmaar faithful with his recent play, which includes a pair of two-goal performances. Fully recovered from the hamstring injury that forced him to miss the CONCACAF Gold Cup semifinal and final, the 21-year-old Altidore is scoring at an unfamiliar rate at the perfect time as he gets reacquainted with the U.S. national team this week ahead of the upcoming friendlies against Costa Rica and Belgium.

Findley, 26, is fit for his first full season with League Championship side Nottingham Forest after struggling with a thigh injury after he joined the club earlier this year. Even though he had played his way off the national team radar, his recent performances, in which he appears to be brimming with confidence, suggest he's in for a rebound campaign. He scored in both of Nottingham Forest's matches this past week and has a firm grasp on a starting role for Steve McClaren's club.

The hot starts by Altidore and Findley are just the tip of the iceberg for Americans who are finding the back of the net so far this season, too.

By an unofficial count, the number of American goal scorers at this juncture in the season compared to last year has almost doubled. With Eric Lichaj, Carlos Bocanegra and Conor O'Brien joining the fray this past week, there are already 19 American goal scorers playing in top or second flights either in Europe or Mexico compared to 10 at this point last year.

Here is how the various goal scorers and the other Americans playing abroad fared this past week (season statistics encompass all competitions):

Premier League

Clint Dempsey, M, Fulham -- Started, played 80 minutes in Fulham's 1-0 loss (3-1 victory on aggregate) to Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk in the playoff round of the UEFA Europa League on Thursday. Dempsey also started, played 90 minutes and scored an 88th-minute goal in Fulham's 2-1 loss to Newcastle on Sunday. Dempsey headed home a free kick from Danny Murphy inside the area to slice Fulham's deficit in half. SEASON: 6 games, 6 starts, 3 goals

Brad Friedel, GK, Tottenham -- In the 18, did not play in Tottenham's 0-0 draw (5-0 victory on aggregate) with Heart of Midlothian in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Friedel started, played 90 minutes and made four saves in Tottenham's 5-1 loss to Manchester City in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 2 games, 2 starts, 15 saves, 8 goals allowed

Brad Guzan, GK, Aston Villa -- Started, played 90 minutes, made three saves and earned the clean sheet in Villa's 2-0 victory over Hereford in the second round of the League Cup on Tuesday. Guzan was in the 18, but did not play in Villa's 0-0 draw with Wolverhampton in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 3 saves, 0 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Stuart Holden, M, Bolton -- Not in the 18 for Bolton's 2-1 victory over Macclesfield Town in the second round of the League Cup on Wednesday or for Bolton's 3-1 loss to Liverpool in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Tim Howard, GK, Everton -- In the 18, did not play in Everton's 3-1 victory over Sheffield United in the second round of the League Cup on Wednesday. Howard started, played 90 minutes, made seven saves and earned the clean sheet in Everton's 1-0 victory over Blackburn in league play on Saturday. Howard saved a penalty kick from Junior Hoilett in the 47th minute and watched as Mauro Formica's 84th-minute penalty stuck the post in order to preserve the shutout. SEASON: 2 games, 2 starts, 7 saves, 1 goal allowed, 1 clean sheet

Eric Lichaj, D, Aston Villa -- Started, played 90 minutes, picked up a yellow card and scored the eventual game-winning goal in Villa's 2-0 victory over Hereford in the second round of the League Cup on Tuesday, firing home after a loose ball in the box after a set piece for his first career goal. Lichaj was not in the 18 for Villa's 0-0 draw with Wolverhampton in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 1 goal

Zak Whitbread, D, Norwich City -- Started, played 71 minutes in Norwich City's 4-0 loss to Milton Keynes Dons in the second round of the League Cup on Tuesday. Whitbread also started and played 30 minutes in Norwich City's 3-1 loss to Chelsea in league play on Saturday. Whitbread, who had just returned from a knee injury, exited the Chelsea match with a pulled hamstring. SEASON: 3 games, 3 starts

League Championship

Conor Doyle, F, Derby County -- Not in the 18 for Derby County's 2-1 loss to Burnley on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Robbie Findley, F, Nottingham Forest -- Started, played 70 minutes and scored a goal in Nottingham Forest's 4-1 victory over Wycombe Wanderers in the second round of the League Cup on Tuesday. Findley received the ball at the top of the area with three defenders in his way, but he juked them all out by cutting back to his left foot and curling a ball inside the post. Findley also started, played 90 minutes and scored a goal from shot range in Nottingham Forest's 4-1 loss to West Ham in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 6 games, 4 starts, 3 goals

Jonathan Spector, M/D, Birmingham City -- Started, played 90 minutes in Birmingham's 3-0 victory (3-0 on aggregate) over Nacional in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Spector also started and played 90 minutes in Birmingham's 2-2 draw with Watford in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 4 games, 4 starts

League One

Mike Grella, F, Brentford -- In the 18, came on as a 65th-minute substitute in Brentford's 2-0 loss to Tranmere Rovers on Saturday. Grella and Leeds United agreed mutually to terminate his contract, allowing him to sign with Brentford on Friday. SEASON: 1 game

Frank Simek, D, Carlisle United -- Not in the 18 for Carlisle's 2-1 victory over Leyton Orient on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Anton Peterlin, M, Walsall -- In the 18, did not play in Walsall's 2-0 victory over AFC Bournemouth on Saturday. SEASON: 4 games, 3 starts

League Two

Jemal Johnson, F, Southend United -- In the 18, did not play in Southend's 3-2 victory over Port Vale on Saturday. SEASON: 4 games, 2 starts

Jon-Paul Pittman, F, Oxford United -- In the 18, came on as a 74th-minute substitute in Oxford's 1-1 draw with Aldershot Town on Saturday. SEASON: 5 games, 1 start

Bundesliga

Michael Bradley, M, Borussia Monchengladbach -- Not in the 18 for Monchengladbach's 1-0 loss to FC Schalke 04 on Sunday. Bradley, who is out of favor at Monchengladbach, is rumored to be on the verge of a transfer to Chievo Verona in Italy's Serie A, according to multiple reports out of Italy. SEASON: 0 games

Timmy Chandler, D, FC Nurnberg -- Started, played 90 minutes in Nurnberg's 1-0 victory over Augsburg on Saturday. SEASON: 5 games, 5 starts

Steve Cherundolo, D, Hannover 96 -- Started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Hannover's 1-1 draw (3-2 victory on aggregate) with Sevilla in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Cherundolo also started and played 90 minutes in Hannover's 1-1 draw with Mainz 05 in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 5 games, 4 starts

Fabian Johnson, M/D, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim -- Started, played 90 minutes in Hoffenheim's 2-1 loss to Werder Bremen on Saturday. Johnson, a former Germany youth international with dual, American-German citizenship, was called up to the U.S. national team to train with the squad for the upcoming friendlies against Costa Rica and Belgium. According to U.S. Soccer, he is currently ineligible to play in a match, because the process of switching associations from Germany to the United States has not been completed; however, Jurgen Klinsmann wanted to integrate Johnson, a winger capable of playing left back, into the team as much as he could for the time being. SEASON: 5 games, 4 starts, 1 goal

Jermaine Jones, M, FC Schalke 04 -- Not in the 18 for Schalke's 6-1 (6-3 on aggregate) victory over HJK Helsinki in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday or for Schalke's 1-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 2 games, 1 start

Alfredo Morales, D, Hertha Berlin -- Not in the 18 for Berlin's 1-0 victory over VfB Stuttgart on Friday. SEASON: 2 games

Daniel Williams, D, SC Freiburg -- In the 18, did not play in Freiburg's 3-0 victory over Wolfsburg on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

David Yelldell, GK, Bayer Leverkusen -- In the 18, did not play in Leverkusen's 0-0 draw with Borussia Dortmund on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start, 1 save, 4 goals allowed

2. Bundesliga

Edson Buddle, F, FC Ingolstadt 04 -- Started, played 61 minutes in Ingolstadt's 3-1 victory over Hansa Rostock on Friday. SEASON: 7 games, 2 starts, 1 goal

Ricardo Clark, M, Eintracht Frankfurt -- Not in the 18 for Frankfurt's 0-0 draw with SC Paderborn 07 on Sunday. SEASON: 1 game, 1 start

Luis Robles, GK, Karlsruhe -- In the 18, did not play in Karlsruhe's 4-0 loss to FSV Frankfurt on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Matt Taylor, F, SC Paderborn 07 -- In the 18, did not play in Paderborn's 0-0 draw with Eintracht Frankfurt on Sunday. SEASON: 5 games, 2 starts, 4 goals

Bobby Wood, F, 1860 Munich -- In the 18, did not play in Munich's 3-1 victory over Union Berlin on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Ligue 1

Quentin Westberg, GK, Evian Thonon Gaillard -- In the 18, did not play in Evian's 1-0 loss to Dijon on Saturday. SEASON: 2 games, 2 starts, 8 saves, 2 goals allowed, 1 clean sheet

Jozy Altidore, F, AZ Alkmaar -- Started, played 63 minutes and scored two goals in AZ's 6-0 win (7-2 on aggregate) over Aalesund in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. An unmarked Altidore hit a first-time shot from the center of the box for his first goal before connecting for a bouncing header off a set piece for his second. Altidore also started, played 76 minutes and picked up a yellow card in AZ's 3-0 victory over Groningen in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 6 games, 3 starts, 5 goals

Oguchi Onyewu, D, Sporting Lisbon -- In the 18, did not play in Sporting's 2-1 (2-1 on aggregate) victory over FC Nordsjaelland in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Onyewu was also in the 18 but did not play in Sporting's 3-2 loss to Maritimo in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Sacha Kljestan, M, RSC Anderlecht -- Started, played 90 minutes in Anderlecht's 2-2 draw (4-3 victory on aggregate) with Bursaspor in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Kljestan also started and came off in the 90th minute of Anderlecht's 1-1 draw with Club Brugge on Sunday. SEASON: 6 games, 6 starts, 1 goal

Alejandro Bedoya, M, Rangers FC -- Not in the 18 for Rangers' 1-1 draw (3-2 loss on aggregate) to Maribor in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Bedoya was in the 18, came on as a 69th-minute substitute in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Aberdeen in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 17 games, 15 starts, 4 goals (16 games, 15 starts, 4 goals with Orebro SK)

Carlos Bocanegra, D, Rangers FC -- Started, played 90 minutes and scored a goal in the 75th minute of Rangers' 1-1 draw (3-2 loss on aggregate) to Maribor in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Bocanegra knocked home a failed clearance off a set piece to level the score and give Rangers a chance to send the tie into extra time, something it ultimately failed to do. Bocanegra also started and played 90 minutes in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Aberdeen in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 4 games, 4 starts, 1 goal (1 game, 1 start with St. Etienne)

Dominic Cervi, GK, Celtic FC -- Not in the 18 for Celtic's 3-1 loss (3-1 on aggregate) to FC Sion in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday or for Celtic's 2-0 victory over St. Mirren in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 0 games

Maurice Edu, M, Rangers FC -- Started played 90 minutes in Rangers' 1-1 draw (3-2 loss on aggregate) with Maribor in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Edu also started, played 90 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Rangers' 2-0 victory over Aberdeen in league play on Saturday. SEASON: 8 games, 8 starts, 1 goal

DaMarcus Beasley, M, Puebla -- Started, played 90 minutes in Puebla's 0-0 draw with Morelia on Sunday. SEASON: 7 games, 7 starts, 1 goal

Jonathan Bornstein, D, Tigres UANL -- In the 18, did not play in Tigres' 1-0 victory over Atlas on Saturday. SEASON: 0 games

Edgar Castillo, D, Club America -- Started, played 90 minutes in America's 2-0 loss to Pachuca on Saturday. SEASON: 5 games, 3 starts

Joe Corona, F, Tijuana -- Started, played 90 minutes in Tijuana's 1-1 draw with Queretaro on Sunday. Corona was called up to the Mexican Under-22 national team last week for a pair of friendlies but still maintains U.S. eligibility. SEASON: 6 games, 6 starts, 2 goals

Michael Orozco Fiscal, D, San Luis -- Started, played 90 minutes in San Luis' 2-0 victory over Chivas de Guadalajara on Saturday. SEASON: 4 games, 3 starts

Herculez Gomez, F, Estudiantes Tecos -- In the 18, came on as a 74th-minute substitute in Tecos' 2-1 loss to Atlante on Saturday. SEASON: 7 games, 4 starts, 2 goals

Sonny Guadarrama, M, Atlante -- Not in the 18 for Atlante's 2-1 victory over Estudiantes Tecos on Saturday. SEASON: 1 game

Adrian Ruelas, F, Jaguares -- Not in the 18 for Jaguares' 1-1 draw with Toluca on Friday. SEASON: 0 games

Jose Francisco Torres, M, Pachuca -- Started, played 84 minutes and picked up a yellow card in Pachuca's 2-0 victory over Club America on Saturday. SEASON: 6 games, 5 starts

Allsvenskanliga

Ryan Miller, D, Halmstads BK -- In the 18, came on as an 88th-minute substitute in Halmstads' 1-0 victory over Trelleborg FF on Saturday. SEASON: 13 games, 9 starts

Samuel Petrone, F, Mjallby -- Not in the 18 for Mjallby's 3-0 loss to GAIS on Sunday. SEASON: 4 games

Clarence Goodson, D, Brondby IF -- Started, played 90 minutes in Brondby's 2-1 loss to FC Midtjylland on Sunday. SEASON: 8 games, 8 starts

Conor O'Brien, M, Sonderjyske -- Started, played 86 minutes and scored a 59th-minute goal in Sonderjyske's 4-2 victory over Odense BK on Sunday. O'Brien connected on a diving header from short range to level the score at the time. SEASON: 4 games, 3 starts, 1 goal

Michael Parkhurst, D, FC Nordsjaelland -- Started, played 90 minutes in Nordsjaelland's 2-1 loss (2-1 on aggregate) to Sporting Lisbon in the playoff round of the Europa League on Thursday. Parkhurst also started and played 90 minutes in Nordsjaelland's 4-0 victory over Lyngby in league play on Sunday. SEASON: 9 games, 9 starts

Chris Rolfe, F, Aalborg BK -- Started, played 67 minutes in Aalborg's 4-1 victory over HB Koge on Saturday. SEASON: 7 games, 7 starts, 2 goals

Brad Rusin, D, HB Koge -- Started, played 90 minutes and scored a 58th-minute goal in Koge's 4-1 loss to Aalborg BK on Saturday. Rusin towered over his mark to head in a corner kick that sliced Koge's deficit to 2-1 at the time. SEASON: 5 games, 5 starts, 2 goals

Sean Cunningham, D, Molde FK -- In the 18, did not play in Molde's 3-1 victory over Aalesund on Sunday. SEASON: 2 games, 2 starts

Mikkel Diskerud, M, Stabaek -- Started, played 90 minutes in Stabaek's 1-0 loss to Viking on Sunday. SEASON: 23 games, 23 starts, 3 goals

Josh Gatt, M, Molde FK -- Started, played 90 minutes and scored a goal in the first minute of Molde's 3-1 victory over Aalesund on Sunday. The fleet-footed Gatt got by his defender and carried to the end line, where he put a speculative shot toward the near post and had the Aalesund goalkeeper fumble it into the goal for a quick strike. SEASON: 22 games, 15 starts, 5 goals

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