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Fulham teammate backs Clint Dempsey, says the Yank is in London to prove a point

Mesut Ozil, Clint Dempsey

Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil competes for the ball with Fulham’s Clint Dempsey, right, during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Fulham at the Emirates Stadium in London, Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)


Clint Dempsey’s been no stranger to controversy over the past year or so. From his transfer from Fulham to Tottenham, to his move home to Major League Soccer and now back to London for a loan spell at Craven Cottage, he’s doing what he feels is right for him.

But don’t presume that confidence in direction on the part of the Seattle Sounders star includes an ignorance to what’s being said on the outside. Just ask his Fulham teammate, defender John Arne Riise:

“People say when you go to America you are on your way down but you can see he is still on top of his game in training.
“He knew he was going to come back to the Premier League on loan so he has stayed fit. He did very well when he was here before, and then at Tottenham, but he is really keen to prove that he is still more than good enough. He is aggressive and knows the Premier League so he has given us a boost.”

Dempsey, 30, hasn’t scored in his first three games back in London, but his track record for Fulham isn’t too shabby... being the club’s all-time leading Premier League scorer and all. Even though his year at Spurs wasn’t lauded, he managed 12 goals in 43 appearances.

The Cottagers have a visit to Sheffield United on Sunday for the FA Cup’s fourth round before Premier League matches with Swansea City, Southampton and Manchester United on the horizon.

Follow @NicholasMendola