American Exports: Altidore, Sunderland move into Capital One Cup semis with win over Chelsea
AMSTERDAM – Jozy Altidore played his part well as Sunderland staged a last-gasp rally to reach extras, where they knocked quarterfinal visitors Chelsea out of the Capital One Cup with a 2-1 decision on Tuesday night.
Though limited to just 11 touches in the first half, the US striker was more involved after the break, drawing a pair of good stops from work in the Chelsea area.
The first such incident occurred with Sunderland down one in the waning moments. Altidore accepted an entry pass at the top of the box before coolly dribbling by Gary Cahill to draw a low fingertip save from Blues netminder Mark Schwarzer. The rebound fell to sub Fabio Borini, who scored from a sharp angle to nudge the game to overtime.
With nine minutes left before penalties, Altidore was cruelly denied a winner, this time by Michael Essien. The American redirected Ki Sung-Yueng's low shot, forcing the Chelsea midfielder into a saving block. The Black Cats were undeterred, though, and would post their first win in eight against Chelsea to advance through the South Korea star's cool 118th minute strike.
Having reached their first tournament final four since the 2004 FA Cup, Sunderland now will wait until Wednesday night's semifinal draw to learn who stands between them and the championship match. Manchester City also reached the next round on Tuesday, while Geoff Cameron's Stoke City hosts Manchester United and Brad Friedel's Tottenham welcomes West Ham United on Wednesday night.