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In Cleveland, hope dies last

Archive for the category “Clint Dempsey”

From the editor’s notebook …

Michael Bourn, Mike Aviles, Jason KipnisA look at a few items that warrant attention but not necessarily a full post …

The Indians make it out of Miami in one piece.

The Tribe closed out Miami on Sunday to take two-out-of-three against the Marlins and finish 6-1 in their recent stretch against the dregs of Major League Baseball.

The Tribe has now won 10-of-11 and return home, where they have the best record in the majors, to take on Detroit in a four-game series.

The Indians enter the series – the biggest the team has played since probably 2007 – three games behind the Tigers for first place in the A.L. Central Division. They also currently hold the second wild card position.

This is the series the Indians have waited for all year. They have spent the entire season trying to convince themselves, the American League and their fans that they are more than just second-class citizens in what is a Browns town. If they are serious about being contenders for the playoffs, this is the series to show it.

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Liverpool apologizes for trying to improve their team

Clint DempseyIn one of those odd, British-only type stories, Liverpool officials have issued a formal apology for trying to improve the team over the summer by expressing interest in Clint Dempsey.

According to The Daily Mail, Liverpool co-owner Tom Werner visited Craven Cottage to apologize to Fulham chairman Mohadem Al Fayed for wanting to bring the American international to Anfield.

The visit was followed by a letter from Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre that said the club’s actions were “wrong” and should “never have occurred.”

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Transfer window slams shut on Liverpool

Well that didn’t go as planned.

Clint Dempsey? He’s moving across town to Tottenham Hotspur.

Daniel Sturridge? Staying at Chelsea.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was nursing some bruised fingers Friday night after the transfer window slammed shut on him without the squad making a move to improve.

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Can Clint Dempsey please move to Liverpool already?

Another day, another layer added to the saga of Clint Dempsey’s inevitable exit from Fulham.

The latest has the west London club getting its knickers in a twist because Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said he would like the 29-year-old Dempsey in Liverpool red. Fulham has made an official complaint to the Premier League over the matter.

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Andy Carroll carousel still spinning at Liverpool

The ongoing saga of Andy Carroll and Liverpool – will he stay? will he go? if so, where and when? – is becoming as tiring as the Cleveland Indians starting rotation.

We’re just a little more than two weeks away from opening weekend of the Premier League season and Carroll is still taking up space at Anfield.

Manager Brendan Rodgers left Carroll off the squad for Liverpool’s trip to Belarus for Thursday’s Europa League qualifier against FC Gomel, which really should signal that the end is here for the 23-year-old striker who has been a disappointment since coming over from Newcastle for £35 million.

So what gives?

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Liverpool slowly moving toward Clint Dempsey

Liverpool continued its slow march to acquiring Clint Dempsey on Wednesday, with manager Brendan Rodgers confirming what has been a open secret for quite some time now.

Yes, the squad is interested in bringing the 29-year-old USA international to Anfield.

“Clint is a player we’ve enquired about, it is as simple as that,” Rodgers told The Daily Mail. “Ian Ayre, our managing director, has spoken with (Fulham) to see what the position is. That is where we’re at. Clint is a very talented player but we don’t like to talk about other clubs’ players.”

Fulham wants £10 million Dempsey, who had a career year last season with 23 goals in all competitions, and who has 12 months left on his contract, but as we mentioned yesterday, Liverpool had to do some selling before they can do any buying.

As for Andy Carroll, Rodgers made it clear there will be no loan deal for the striker.

“To consider a loan period for someone the club spent £35 million on isn’t something we’re looking to do,” he said. “Andy will be the same as every other player – if there’s an offer that comes in we’d look at it and see if it’s going to be worthwhile for the club as a whole. People talk about whether he can fit into my style or not, but if you’re a club and you spend £35 million on a player you’d like to think he can fit into whatever style the team plays. He’s a good player. He’ll join the rest of the group next week and we’ll take it from there.”

We are a little worried that Liverpool will be buying high on Dempsey, but The Guardian’s Paul Doyle says that shouldn’t be a concern:

Because although last season was Dempsey’s most productive, he has been an excellent performer in the Premier League for the best part of five years. … Dempsey is a genuine dynamo, the second most prolific tackler among forwards in the Premier League for each of the past three seasons and covering more ground than prize horse manure.

Tenacity and energy are Dempsey’s first two defining traits and also the founding blocks of the style that Rodgers will seek to build, if his old Swansea City side were anything to go by. The drive that has already propelled Dempsey from his relatively disadvantaged roots in a small town in East Texas to the top of the MLS and then the Premier League ensure that he will not be rendered as meek by Anfield expectations as, say, Stewart Downing and young Jordan Henderson appear to have been.

This is a ferocious competitor who has played matches with a broken jaw and gone into challenges hard enough to fracture John Terry’s cheekbone. A seasoned American international, he will be fazed neither by the stature of Liverpool nor the amount of off-the-ball work that Rodgers will demand.

I think that pretty much works to calm our fears.

And so the slow dance continues.

(Photo by Getty Images)

The Browns should just give up now

With nothing better to do while waiting for the opening of training camps across the NFL, Pro Football Talk decided to release preseason power rankings for the league’s 32 teams.

And, of course, they put the Browns at No. 32.

That’s right, the Browns are supposedly worse than the Colts, who have rookie quarterback Andrew Luck throwing to 33-year-old wide receiver Reggie Wayne and not much else; worse than Jacksonville with Blaine Gabbert and tarps covering thousands of unsold seats; worse than a Miami team that is considering starting David Gerrard at quarterback; worse than the Vikings, Rams and every other crappy team in the league.

It’s so bad, the Browns may as well give up on the season and start focusing on who they will pick with the No. 1 overall selection in the 2013 draft.

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Belichick and Brady are certainly no Brown and Graham

There has always been a subset of NFL fans who think the league did not begin until the Super Bowl era started in 1967 (in these parts, they are known as Steeler fans).

So it didn’t totally surprise us when we read on ESPN how, if New England beats Baltimore in today’s AFC Championship Game, then Bill Belichick and Tom Brady will become the first head coach and starting quarterback tandem in NFL history to reach five Super Bowls.

Belichick and Brady are currently tied with Pittsburgh’s Chuck Noll and Terry Bradshaw, Buffalo’s Marv Levy and Jim Kelly, and Dallas’ Tom Landry and Roger Staubach with four Super Bowl appearances.

While getting to five Super Bowls is certainly an impressive feat, by ignoring the fact that the NFL has existed since 1920 and overlooks coaching and quarterback duos that have far surpassed what Belichick and Brady have accomplished.

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Clint Dempsey’s the man

Congratulations to Clint Dempsey, who on Monday became the highest-scoring American in the Premier League.

Dempsey’s goal at the 85-minute mark gave him 37 goals since joining Fulham in 2006, breaking a tie with former teammate Brian McBride, who played with Everton in 2003 and Fulham from 2004 to 2008.

We’re even willing to overlook that Dempsey’s goal came in a win against Liverpool.

And speaking of the Reds, it’s never a good sign when your £35 million investment’s performance is labeled as being “lumbering.

Yeesh.

We’ll have what Jack’s having

What in the world has gotten into Jack Hannahan?

And how can the Indians make sure the rest of the team catches it?

After homering in the second and again in the sixth inning Wednesday night against Oakland, and driving in the game-winning run in the 16th inning, Hannahan is hitting .444 (16-for-36) with three home runs and 11 RBI on the Tribe’s current homestand.

Whatever Hannahan is doing is working, we just wish he could pass it on the rest of the lineup.

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Despite rumors that Arsenal was targeting American Clint Dempsey it looks like Dempsey is staying at Fulham as the transfer window has closed for now.

Not to bag on Fulham or Craven Cottage, but it would have been nice to see Dempsey have a chance on a bigger stage that, despite its early season woes, Arsenal can provide.

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Ever wonder what footwear Katie Whitham keeps in her black shoulder bag? Then head over to Waiting for Next Year for an interview with the sideline reporter for SportsTime Ohio at Tribe games.

All kidding aside, it’s a really good read. Check it out.

(Photo by The Plain Dealer)

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