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Aug 052013

130802 clint dempsey lg Ambitious Sounders seal Dempsey deal

Seattle Sounders have pulled off one of the biggest coups in MLS history by persuading Tottenham Hotspur striker Clint Dempsey to sign for them.

Just 12 months ago Spurs, currently 15/8 to finish in the top four this season with Paddy Power, were willing to spend £6million to sign Dempsey from Fulham, but boss Andre Villas-Boas has now decided to discard the 30-year-old, having completed the signing of Roberto Soldado from Valencia.

It’s true that Dempsey endured a difficult 2012-13 campaign at White Hart Lane, but it is still a major shock to see an established USA international who is in the prime of his career, opt to leave the Premier League and move to the MLS.

Dempsey spent more than five years with Fulham, finding the net 50 times in 184 Premier League appearances for the Cottagers before snubbing Liverpool’s advances last summer and moving to north London. His old club Fulham have sometimes struggled for firepower since, and are now outsiders in the football betting odds to finish in the top six come next May.

However, he struggled to settle at Spurs and managed only seven goals in 29 Premier League matches, picking up just five more goals in 14 Cup appearances.

The Seattle Sounders have evolved into the best-supported team in MLS since playing their inaugural match in March 2009.

They are averaging 40,000 fans a game, approximately 50 per cent more than the next best supported side, the LA Galaxy.

They signed the former Newcastle United striker Obafemi Martins earlier this year from Levante and the Nigerian striker has been a great success in Seattle, scoring seven times in just 14 appearances for the Sounders.

Dempsey is a proven international and has scored 16 goals for his country in the last three seasons and returns to his homeland after spending almost seven years in England.

He left the New England Revolution for Fulham in December 2006 in a $4million deal which at the time was the largest amount ever paid for an MLS player.

Matthew Martin

Business manager for Global Football Today. I write the occasional article, but mostly stay behind the scenes.

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