Jozy Altidore’s status for the remainder of the World Cup is in question after the American forward strained his left hamstring in the 21st minute of Monday’s 2-1 win against Ghana in Natal, Brazil.
Wincing in pain, Altidore was taken off on a stretcher and replaced two minutes later. The 24-year-old was expected to be evaluated Tuesday at the team’s training headquarters in Sao Paulo.
‘‘It was a little bit of a shock that Jozy got injured,’’ coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. ‘‘It was a tough pill to swallow.’’PHOTOS: US beats Ghana, 2-1
Said team captain Clint Dempsey, “You know how much he wanted to do well . . . You could see the tears in his eyes going back to the locker room. We wish him a speedy recovery. He’s a big player for us. It hurts to have him go out of the game today, but other players have to step up now.’’
Protestors burn flags
Demonstrators burned an American flag near the stadium where Vice President Joe Biden was scheduled to attend the US-Ghana match. The protesters in Natal also burned a flag of international soccer governing body FIFA and shouted against ‘‘imperialism.’’
The protest drew only a few dozen people and they posed no threat to security officers who stopped them at a barricade about a mile from the stadium’s gates.
Anti-World Cup demonstrations also took place in the southern city of Curitiba prior to a 0-0 draw between Iran and Nigeria.
After being repelled by police near that stadium, protesters regrouped downtown and used bricks and construction debris to smash windows of at least three banks. They also sprayed anti-World Cup slogans on city buses.
Mass protests against the high cost of the World Cup spread across Brazil last year, but demonstrations have been more subdued since the tournament began Thursday.
Suarez cleared to go
Uruguay striker Luis Suarez said he’s fully recovered from his knee operation and will put his insider knowledge of English football to use against Roy Hodgson’s team on Thursday in Sao Paulo. Having sat out Uruguay’s 3-1 loss to Group D underdog Costa Rica, Suarez, who also plays for Liverpool, said he has been medically cleared to play. He said: ‘‘I'm 100 percent’’ ready and has ‘‘great desire to help my teammates.’’ . . . Brazil striker Hulk missed training again and remains doubtful for the team’s match against Mexico on Tuesday in Fortaleza because of an unspecified ailment. The Brazilian football federation said no serious injury was detected in an MRI scan on Monday, but the player did not join the rest of the squad for training at the Arena Castelao. The federation said a decision on whether Hulk can play will only be made Tuesday after doctors evaluate his condition . . . Italy midfielder Daniele De Rossi sat out training Monday in Mangaratiba because of neck pain, adding to the Azzurri’s injury problems at the World Cup. Captain Gianluigi Buffon and fullback Mattia De Sciglio also remained out. Buffon hurt his left ankle and knee a day before Italy’s 2-1 win over England. De Sciglio missed the Azzurri’s opener with a pulled muscle.
Police in Rio de Janeiro are investigating the case of a policeman who appears to have fired a live round at anti-World Cup protesters, a scene caught on an Associated Press video. Rio state’s military police say the officer presented himself to headquarters Monday. He is being questioned and has been taken off duty pending the investigation. It is not clear if any protesters were hurt by the shot he allegedly fired . . . American referee Mark Geiger will handle Wednesday’s marquee match between Spain and Chile at Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro. Geiger, of Beachwood, N.J., officiated in Colombia’s 3-0 win over Greece in Belo Horizonte Saturday.