Clint Dempsey's stand-off with Fulham took a dramatic turn Friday, as manager Martin Jol confirmed the American wants to leave the club amid reports Dempsey has been fined for refusing to play.
The U.S. international striker's contract expires at the end of the upcoming season, and he's made no secret of his desire to move on to a bigger club, with Liverpool confirming its interest.
Dempsey has been left out of the squad for Fulham's Premier League opener against Norwich on Saturday.
“Clint Dempsey wants to move,” Jol said at a press conference. “He doesn’t want to commit to this club and, while I would like to keep him, it’s impossible because he wants to move. He told me that he wants to go to a Champions League club - he said it last year, he said it in the summer, and he said it again."
According to a report in Press Association Sport, Dempsey has been fined by Fulham for refusing to play for the club.
Jol expressed his frustration with Liverpool during the press conference. Reds manager Brendan Rodgers publicly stated his desire to sign the 29-year-old last month, but no firm offer has come through from Merseyside thus far.
"That was very disappointing," Jol said. "Clint 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. It's almost embarrassing. If you have shown interest in a player, you have to follow it up with an offer."
If Dempsey is to leave Craven Cottage, he has two weeks to do so, as the summer transfer window expires Aug. 31. Jol said that the American would get his wish only if Fulham receives a bid it deems acceptable.
“We’ve got a chairman who is strong and if we get the right price for Clint then we will sell him," the Dutchman said. "If we don’t, then he will stay here. We won’t let Clint Dempsey go on the cheap, that’s for sure.”
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