American Exports: Fulham accuse Liverpool over Dempsey
Fulham have had enough.
On Thursday the London club revealed that it filed an official complaint to the Premier League regarding the public comments made last month by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers on the Reds' interest in American national team star Clint Dempsey.
Fulham's star forward still has one year remaining on his contract, but that didn't prevent Rodgers from making this statement back in July: "Clint is a player we've inquired about, it is as simple as that. Ian Ayre, our managing director, has spoken with [Fulham] to see what the position is."
The situation led to Fulham freezing Dempsey out of the squad, sending him to train with the club's youth team during preseason.
Dempsey is now set to miss Fulham's second EPL match of the season when they visit Manchester United this weekend, and Fulham manager Martin Jol on Thursday revealed that the move is connected to Liverpool's public declaration of interest.
"Mentally Clint wants to move, he doesn't want to stay here. His head was turned and that was the problem," Jol told media on Thursday. "I don't know if he'll remain a Fulham player. I'd love to keep him, but I'm not sure.
"Hopefully if he stays, then in the next couple of weeks he will change his thoughts about us. With me there's no problem and I don't think there's a problem within the team over him."
Jol also told media that it was his sole decision to keep Dempsey away from the squad beginning with the preseason training camp in Germany.
"I never said he's gone on strike," Jol said. "I was probably a bit naive, asking 'Clint, do you want to start?'. All he said was 'you know what I want' … After that it was very difficult to communicate. He was not committed to the team.
"For us it would have been better had Liverpool followed it up with a formal bid, but they haven't."
The EPL has come down hard in the past on clubs that have been found guilty of "tapping up" or tampering with players under contract. Chelsea infamously suffered sanctions for their pursuit of Ashley Cole and Gael Kakuta, which were later appealed.