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Report: Jol plays down suggestions of Fulham signing Dempsey on loan

ClintDempseySeattleSounders3-LAGalaxy (USATodaySports)


Seattle Sounders forward Clint Dempsey is expected to join a European club on loan this winter, but it doesn’t seem like a return to Fulham is in the cards.

Fulham manager Martin Jol, who coached Dempsey in his best year at Fulham in 2011/2012, denied any speculation that the U.S. Men’s National Team forward could be back at Craven Cottage this winter during the Major League Soccer offseason. Fulham have struggled this season to score goals, with nine goals from nine games, including four last Monday against Crystal Palace.

“It’s unbelievable speculation, which is nice,” Jol told the Fulham Chronicle. “I never talk about players, especially when they are not here.”

It makes sense for Dempsey’s name to pop up among the rumors of players that Fulham is interested in because of the prior success he enjoyed at the club. Between 2006 and 2012, Dempsey scored 50 Premier League goals for the club including a 23-goal campaign in all competitions under Jol in 2011/2012.

Last week, USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann made it clear that MLS-based players in the national team pool should move to European clubs to continue playing during the long offseason, so as not to lose form and fitness. If they don’t go on loan, they’ll stay with the National Team and train with them in the winter.

Fulham currently sit in 14th place in the Premier League table, just two points above the relegation zone. They face Manchester United this Saturday.

On Sunday evening, Dempsey scored his first goal since making his return to MLS with the Sounders in early August. Since joining, the 30-year-old has struggled with hamstring and other muscle injuries that have had him in and out of the lineup.


What do you think of this report? Do you see Dempsey joining Fulham this offseason? Do you expect him to return to England? Do you see him staying in America to train with the National Team instead?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. This is not going to be popular but I think Dempsey’s best days are behind him. First the failure at Spurs and now, struggling to make an impression in MLS equal to his salary. JK in the mean time is looking at lots of people in Dempsey’s position. Im not saying he won’t go to the WC but he definitely has competition and is far from a lock to start.

    • I think he is about 5 years from the prime of his career. Clearly his career trajectory is Golden Boot in Qatar and World Player of the year in 2020.

      • that would make him 35? I don’t think that will be his prime. His time near the end of Fulham was his prime. He looks old to me now and disappears during games far to much for my liking

      • I agree completely. He’s the type of slow burn player that will get better with age. My guess is he won’t hit is prime until about 37-38.

  2. The way Dempsey left Fulham and the way he’s been playing makes this the stupidest rumor in the history of stupid rumors….. but then, his one goal this season is about par with Fulham’s 9 goals in 9 games.

    • Except maybe Dempsey’s people (agents) are stirring this pot now to move along the process of determining his loan home. Fulham technically had a right of first refusal. o the silly rumor — and I agree it’s nuts because the fans at Fulham would not be pleased, nor might the team be — is thus necessary to get them to disavow their rights, which then allows him to talk turkey more broadly.

  3. The return of Deuce

    5 goals, 5 assists in 10 games to keep Fulham from being relegated and he becomes a HERO again

    though if he never left, he would have become their greatest football player of all time and they would sing his praises from here to eternity. Probably rename Craven Cottage to Dempsey Cottage

    • Easy there. First, Fulham are in no danger of being relegated. Second, Dempsey ain’t no Johnny Haynes. And let’s not forget Brian McBride, George Best, Bobby Moore, Louis Saha, Edwin van der Sar…

      • No danger? My antennae go up when I hear such phrases this early in the season. Fulham is 2 points above the drop and has some history cutting it close. They also have European history but this feels more like the former than the latter, unless winter changes are made. Little too slow and methodical.

      • No, I have been paying attention, since I’m a Fulham supporter. The team is far from great, but with Sunderland and Crystal Palace looking like a clear bottom two and Fulham’s recent history as a solid mid-level club, I’m about as certain as I could be that they’ll be in the PL next year. They’ll probably finish around thirteenth or fourteenth, maybe as high as tenth or eleventh if they have a good window in January (a possibility, given the new owner’s deep pockets).

      • I support Fulham as well and the team is not very good this season. With either a change in manager or some smart January buys to improve the mix of players, they’re in serious trouble. It’s very difficult to have Berbatov and Ruiz in the side as they like to play in the same spots and without a forward leading the line, the other side compresses the field on them. With their deliberate play and slow tempo, this isn’t a good combination.

        Palace is nailed on for relegation, but I wouldn’t be so quick to say the same about Sunderland.

      • You’re quite right, and I never claimed otherwise. But even if we’re narrowing the discussion down to players remembered for their time with FFC, Dempsey isn’t even the most highly-regarded American in the club’s history. He might have passed McBride after a few more years, but that ship has sailed.

      • Although I think a move for a few months to Fulham is unlikely, Jol is not in a position to be picky. Fulham has been anemic offensively this season and a player like Dempsey can’t hurt. As to the players you mention, Haynes is the only one that has been more important to Fulham. Saha is about level with Demps, with McBride slightly behind. VDS wasn’t there long enough to be a legend with Best and Moore only making token appearances.

  4. lol, just go back to the EPL and buy a mansion for your wife in MIami or in London and put your kids in the best charter school in london. Also get direct tv to watch nba, nfl, mlb and USA news. Take a multi cultural head chef and a chevy truck or ford. Go watch the NFL as well and visit the military bases in england.

  5. I understand JK point of view, but I cant help but think that if Landy or Clint try to go do the Euopean thing one of them will pick up an injury. They are not spring chickens and Clint especially seems a bit worn down. Im all for the Zusi types to go explore any interest in them but the killer D’s may be better off at home resting.

    • I agree, Landon and Dempsey know the level you have to be at to compete in Europe. I think getting a month off and then a month in camp would be better for them. However guys like Gonzalez and Zusi could use being tested at a higher level,

    • Yeah that’s a good point. I’m definitely torn about what would be best for the “D’s”. Both have been fighting nagging injuries all season, and yet neither has consistently faced the kind of competition they would get in the EPL. And, sure, both have before and know what it takes, but that can’t replace actually doing it in the same year to achieve that “form”. You gotta think those two must be sharp for us to make a run in Brazil.

  6. I feel this website assignment has just turned into summaries of other website stories. This story was posted on ESPNFC. I enjoy Ives’ site but it doesn’t feel that there are any original stories; just rehashes.

    • Sort of agree, I can’t help but think that any insight or special report that Ives has is going to go on instead of this site…and I hate that site.

    • Also agree – and it’s been this way for a while now.

      I still come here for basic info and the comment threads, but the lack of original content is a bummer. Total lack of interesting analysis. And then there are those posts with one line of interest that say “go check out my article on ____.”

    • Agreed. I only come here for the people, and they appear to be moving away. Blogs like these are generally 90% rehashed content, which is perfectly fine when the audience is there to add perspectives. Sports blogs live off their community.

      As for me:

      Clint won’t go near Fulham, and he’s not good enough for Spurs. A cheeky bid from Sunderland…

      Donovan will always have an open ticket to Everton. Please send him there.

      Gonzo should go to the Championship, as should Zusi.

      • Is there an alternative to SBI? I had originally come here for the unique perspective of the topics covered and forum post conversations. The unique reporting has gone and it seems the comments are suffering as well. Please cool kids tell me where else I can go.

      • This sounds like “In the good ole days…” The think the truth is that Ives was not the maestro when it came to writing stories here. I don’t pay much attention to who the writer is, so I haven’t noticed a change as Ives has written less and less. However, I did notice how tacky it was that he was just plugging some other site in his last report. The biggest real change is that there are other sites that seriously compete in terms of content with SBI now. But IMHO, I haven’t found another site that is better, especially when it comes to the value added by some commentors

      • This website is fantastic for daily updates on anything American related. I also love the weekend previews/rewinds. That said, if you’re looking for interesting perspectives and in depth analyses, theshinguardian is where it’s at. Doesn’t update frequently, though.

      • I still like that SBI’s focus is pretty much mine: USMNT, MLS, Yanks Abroad, and then other big stories in the soccer world. I can get a summary of the soccer news related to these areas here, but I do agree with others too that the level of analysis in the pieces posted here has declined.

        I find myself going more to the MLS website, which has some good analysis pieces and some decent discussion in the comments, while still focusing on the topics I’m interested in. I also think the SI soccer section has been getting better. Wahl has always been top drawer, Straus is pretty decent and posts more frequently, and Avi Creditor (formerly of SBI, I think) has good MLS pieces. The comment threads are pretty dead there, though.

        ESPNFC seems so slanted towards EPL and UCL that I don’t there often for US-related stuff.

      • One of the biggest reasons the comments are suffering is because the inane structure of the comments. Once more than a few comments with replies show up on a thread it becomes almost impossible to tell what order the comments were made in. Comments are going both up and down the thread in a very confusing manner. I’ve given up…

    • This site has always been primarily a collection of soccer news. It’s different from other sites in that it has more comprehensive coverage of the American soccer world, including college, women’s, lower divisions, etc. I also think its news coverage is useful because everything goes through Ives’ filter. He’s not just a blogger; he has enough contacts to be able to sniff out when things are legit or not, so unlike most of the rest of the internet, he only posts developing stories when they have some legs. He also will sometimes be the first to break a story. So this is mostly a place to come for news. You’re not going to get lots of tactical analysis like you might at places like The Shin Guardian.

      As for original content, well, I used to ask for more original content from Ives years ago since I value his takes on things more than anything else. It’s not really any different now. The site has never had as much of Ives’ viewpoint as I would have liked, and this goes all the way back to the beginning of the site. There is still some original content, like the 23 for 2014 and whatnot. But I am now able to get my fill of original stuff from Ives through the SBI Show, which gives me more of his views than this website ever has.

      • +1 To Joamiq’s comment.

        To be honest, I don’t visit that often. So, I won’t complain if Ives posts a link to a story that he wrote for them. He can’t re-post it here in its entirety because he probably doesn’t own it–and it would be pointless anyway. And I, for one, would not expect him to write the same story twice.

        I come here to see what’s going on with everything that is American Soccer–whether it’s USMNT, USWNT, College Soccer, USL Pro, NASL, MLS, or just a general story about things related to USSF. You get a good in-depth piece now and then about some player (or the Cosmos), and his take on the current USMNT pool. I don’t always agree with him (and most people here don’t), but that’s okay.

        Don’t get me wrong, I miss having more OC from Ives himself; I miss the stories that Avi used to give us, but hey SBI show is awesome, and I’ve always loved the Q&A’s (how ’bout an Old School Q&A for a throwback, Ives?). Oh, and where else can I get something like the weekend soccer tv schedule: list of all the televised games with the times and the channels they are going to be on.

    • I think that linking to stories on or summarizing those stories are second best solutions, but still solutions. I suppose it would be best if the articles were just here, but at least this way you can get the info and participate in a decent comment thread.


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