Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Clint Dempsey to Fulham Football Club

Ole Deuce
pic lifted from

Clint Dempsey, midfielder for MLS finalists New England Revolution will be moving to London. Fulham has been negotiating with Clint and the EPL to get the Texan in-house for a few months now and I am glad to see it, Clint deserves it and so does the Major League Soccer (MLS).

The MLS has vastly underpaid Clint and they should be proud to offer their best to THE BEST, the English Premiere League. The MLS apparently came away with $4 million in the process which isn't too bad.

Fulham is in the thick of things. There's tons of pressure in the EPL and its been my observation that soccer is a very emotional and psychological sport and the players are especially thin skinned. Certainly the stakes are high. In real Futbol (not the MLS) teams get demoted to lower leagues if they finish in the bottom three so the stakes are incredibly highdue to the pride and the money involved. The MLS in the USA in its attempt to mimic the MLB, NHL, NBA and NFL has allowed teams to stay in the league and suck for however long they like. Teams in the English Premiere League (EPL) and all futbol leagues on this planet are arraned in one "conference" so every single game counts points wise. Despite having only a dozen teams or so, the MLS arranges this geographically and sends a disproportionately high percentage of teams to playoffs.

I like Fulham. One of the sweetest things I have ever seen in sport was defender Zat Knight running to hug his coach after scoring a rare goal. For hours I scoured the video websites looking for the replay but could not find it. Knight's action speaks volumes about the relationship between the Fulham players and their coach.

Clint was not happy with the MLS between the low pay and especially the poor refereeing. MLS should be proud that their best players are showing up in the EPL. The US Men's soccer coach should he happiest of all, that's one more player getting top flight playing time in preparation for the United States' eventual domination of world futbol.

Dempsey's move overseas should be eased by the fact that two of his Brian McBride and Carlos Bocanegra are Americans (good thing he didn't go to Arsenal where the official club house language is French.) This central London team with the trio of Yanks should be fun to watch.

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