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Losing his League One mark on a match-losing goal: Are you worried about Clint Dempsey yet?

Feb 5, 2014, 10:10 AM EDT

Are you worried about Clint Dempsey yet? The American captain did very little upon his heralded return to Major League Soccer last season and has struggled to find any semblance of his form at Fulham.

Think we’re exaggerating? Take a look at the stellar man-marking by Dempsey that lead to the free-headed game-winning goal, embarrassing Fulham in extra time of their FA Cup ouster against League One’s Sheffield United yesterday.

And photography can play tricks, but look at this photo of Shaun Miller heading home in the 119th minute after slipping Dempsey… who is not even in the frame.

source: AP

It’s poor, and comes on the heels of eight goals conceded, none created and four-straight Premier League losses with Dempsey back at Craven Cottage. Which, of course, follows one goal in 12 appearances for the Sounders.

In fact, since scoring 3 goals and posting an assist in back-to-back matches for the States against Belgium and Germany, Dempsey has appeared 24 times in total for the Yanks, Seattle and Fulham. He scored the lone goal in a 3-1 loss to Costa Rica and recorded a goal and an assist in the last two matches of October for Seattle.

That’s it for his point production, and while there’s much to be said for how, at most, only the final two players pick up tally marks on the stat sheet, there’s plenty of reason for concern here (even for a gamer like Dempsey).

He’s been backed by Fulham teammates who say he’s out to prove a point, and our own Kyle Bonn further detailed his Fulham struggles last week. Something’s gotta give for the 30-year-old.

Cause if he’s not flying in Brazil… what’s happening to the US in Group G?

  1. charliej11 - Feb 5, 2014 at 10:59 AM

    I watched this game. Why is Dempsey wasting his time there ? Is it money, if so the Sounders are paying enough that it shouldn’t be.

    The same thing that you are talking about here is EXACTLY why he should be praticing with the Sounders, rather than losing to low quality English teams with teamates who already done for the season.
    He needs to be able to play soccer with a team….not be on some mission made up by bloggers to “show he can compete at the highest level”… do that you need to practice with your team. If you don’t, then you leave guys unmarked on corner kicks.

    I wonder if he can quit the loan early ? IF so…DO IT !!!

  2. christophershearin - Feb 5, 2014 at 11:39 AM

    the video seems to show that sidwell was out of position, if sidwell had been more insync with the back line, the player would have been offside…..

    • keytoarson - Feb 5, 2014 at 12:08 PM

      @christopher There’s a dude on the post so your argument isn’t valid. A reach at best to try to protect a lazy player. Dempsey just got lost looking at the ball and completely lost his marker. Amateur hour. I’ll give him a pass when he played for the Sounder (new team, new strategy, player quality, etc) but if he plays the same way this spring, I wouldn’t mind leaving him for someone like Zusi/Diskerud/Johannsson/etc (depending on what formation we go down there with).

    • midtec2005 - Feb 5, 2014 at 12:29 PM

      There was a guy on the post too.

    • Nicholas Mendola - Feb 5, 2014 at 12:34 PM

      There’s a guy on the back post and Sidwell knows that, which is why he can’t jettison his mark once the ball’s in the air. It’s a bad play by Clint, a guy I’ve enjoyed watching.

  3. midtec2005 - Feb 5, 2014 at 12:32 PM

    “Cause if he’s not flying in Brazil… what’s happening to the US in Group G?”

    I actually think we will be alright now, because of how much deeper our team is. What’s the worst that can happen, he doesn’t start? In that case you can insert Johansson or Zusi back into the lineup. I feel comfortable with either one.

    There is still time though, hopefully he starts clicking with Seattle this year.

  4. el timo - Feb 5, 2014 at 2:10 PM

    The video from back of the goal showed CD ball-watching when the Sheffield player walked in for his winning header. Oh well, Clint’s in there as a center-forward. What looked worse for CD was his failure to get his head on cross after cross into the box, especially at the end of the game. When a cross did reach his head in front of goal, he was falling backward and blew a clear chance to win the game for Fulham. When he had the ball at his feet, his “move” was to crumble to the turf and appeal for a foul.
    Even if this weak play is a calculated attempt at saving Clint’s usual smart, kamikaze-style self for the world cup, it makes you wonder if he’s still got what it takes.

  5. snooppp68 - Feb 5, 2014 at 2:29 PM

    He is runnin’ outta gas, as is Donovan!!!!! They play now like they have cement booties on!!!! I guess he only can compete now on a SNOWY PITCH!!!!! “Instant karma GOT to you”!!!! LOL!!!!

    • midtec2005 - Feb 5, 2014 at 3:34 PM

      I have news for you, bro. The snow helped CR, not the U.S.

      The U.S. was easily the best team throughout the hex, we would have won by more without the snow. Neither team could play at all…. Get over it.

  6. dfstell - Feb 5, 2014 at 4:03 PM

    Ugh…not his best moment. He is kinda a mess right now. The thing that concerns me is that he’s playing like he doesn’t give a crap. He has always had a kinda laid back air about him, so it could be nothing or it could be that he’s just lacking motivation right now. Anyway….I’m not concerned YET. If he’s still playing poorly a month into the MLS season, then is is a problem because our “Captain” probably shouldn’t be starting if he can’t do better.

  7. lyleoross - Feb 5, 2014 at 5:24 PM

    I wonder if Clint needs the same thing Donovan needed, some time off? His drive has led him to go non-stop for over a year. A rest might serve him well.

  8. sollya - Feb 9, 2014 at 4:11 AM

    After reading this explanation I’m not very worried. He did have injuries then the typical adjustment needed at new team Seattle:

    Other on Dempsey:

    Have to consider he”s has hardly gotten a chance at the ball & many changes since left Fulham. For the US being healthy, getting minutes, work outs and staying injury free is the main thing. A bonus if can save Fulham again. Was odd though he missed a close to net penalty kick Sept 10 against Mexico. But even Messi misses once in a while.

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