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Altidore loving life in Holland with AZ Alkmaar

Jozy Altidore has revealed that he feels right at home with Dutch club AZ Alkmaar.

The 22-year old USA international finally found his niche in Europe after struggling with Spanish side Villarreal from where he had a number of loans with the likes of Xerez, Hull City and Bursaspor.

Altidore scored 15 goals for AZ last season and is happy to continue his development with the club he joined in July last year.

"I've never been in a position as comfortable as I was with AZ this season," he told FIFA.com.

"At Villarreal, Nilmar and Guiseppe Rossi were ahead of me, whereas here I'm able to play at last. I'd never really had the chance to express myself, but here I've got that and it changes everything.

"And even more so given that the team's attacking philosophy helps the forwards to score. I'm surrounded by very good players, so I get good service and obviously it's easier to gain confidence in those conditions. I'm at home with AZ."

He added: "I've improved so much since I first started in Europe. I'm a lot more mature today and that's crucial in terms of better understanding and reading the game.

"I'm lucky enough to have had great coaches to help me improve, like Manuel Pellegrini and Bruce Arena. I've been able to take advantage of each season to learn and heed the lessons, but it was when I finally had the chance to play that I was able to express myself."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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