Clint Dempsey says he’s delighted to back in the Fulham first team after suffering a serious ankle injury against Blackburn in January.

Initial media reports suggested the American midfielder might miss this summer’s World Cup – including a repeat of the USA’s famous 1950 game against England on June 12 – but Dempsey returned to the Fulham side as a substitute against Juventus last Thursday. He followed that up with a start at Manchester United on Sunday and is hoping to feature in an exciting run of games for Fulham, starting with the return leg against Juve later this week.

That’s why you play in the Premiership, so you can play the best teams in the world so it’s exciting when you get to play in those games. You want to play in big games and it was great to be back.

I’m not so sure about the new beard Deuce has been growing during his time off, though.