Well, the cloak of mystery has officially been lifted; Clint Dempsey wants to leave Fulham, according to manager Martin Jol.
During a pre-match news conference ahead of Fulham’s season-opener against Norwich City, Jol was quite clear about Dempsey’s status. From the BBC:
“If we get the right price for Clint we will sell him. If not, he will stay.”
“I would like to keep him, but I think it’s impossible. It’s a sad and an almost embarrassing situation.”
And then more harsh words from Jol to ESPN:
“Clint was not involved over the last four weeks, so he is not going to be in the squad … He is not committed to the club. He wants to leave.”
Jol then went on to berate Liverpool’s role in Dempsey’s mindset.
“(Liverpool’s role) was very disappointing … There was never an offer. Clint himself told everyone he was going to Liverpool before he came back so we really thought there was quite a firm interest in him. … Even [Rodgers] told everyone he was interested in Clint Dempsey, but our people never had an offer on the table, so it’s almost embarrassing. … If you have shown interest in a player, especially in England, you have to follow it up with an offer. They didn’t.”
“I can assure you that our chairman is strong enough. At first we didn’t want to get rid of him, later on we had to change our position. … But our view is that we won’t let Clint Dempsey go on the cheap, that’s for sure.”
The transfer window closes at the end of August, meaning Liverpool still has a few weeks left to make an official offer for Dempsey.