Ahead of the Confederations Cup final tonight, Clint Dempsey has thanked Fulham’s coaching staff for helping him progress as a player.
There was some speculation that Dempsey could have been heading elsewhere at the start of last season when he lost his place in the first team to new signing Zoltan Gera. The American midfielder’s chances were limited to brief substitute appearances and he had publicly voiced his frustration. Hodgson challenged him to win back his place and the joy with which he celebrated his late equaliser at Portsmouth, which arguably played a big part in helping turn our season, showed just how pleased he was to be back.
Dempsey rose to the challenge, turning in some whole-hearted performances and weighing in with some crucial goals. It’s a habit he seems to have transferred to the international stage as well, judging by his exploits in South Africa.
He certainly seems to have no thoughts of moving on just yet.
I think I have two more years left at Fulham and I’m happy and enjoying my time there. You never know in football, it’s so crazy, but I feel like I’m developing as a player and don’t need to move. That’s the most important thing.
Roy Hodgson, Mike Kelly and Ray Lewington have done a great job helping me develop as a player. I’m a more complete player now than when I first arrived in England. I owe a lot to them. It was a successful season for us and we’re in the Europa League now and I’m very excited about that as well. I’m looking forward to going back there.
I’m hoping next year will be a big year for us. You never know, maybe I’ll turn up at pre-season training with a trophy!
Dempsey felt the win over Spain was massive, but a big challenge awaits against Brazil this evening.
It was a great night. I don’t think anyone expected us to do it because we have never been to a major final before. But now we want to go that one step further and win the final.