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Bradley's strong start at Roma is hampered by thigh injury.

Unexpectedly, Edu winds up at Stoke City, where he joins Cameron in EPL.

Altidore scores two goals again, AZ wins first 3-1 over Almelo.

Dempsey is in limbo with Fulham, eyeing move to Liverpool.

Altidore records pair of goals, Alkmaar ties Ajax 2-2.

Granted a work permit, Cameron finalizes to EPL's Stoke City.

Boyd scores two, assists one for Rapid Wien to help opening victory.

Guzan signs 3-year deal with Aston Villa, will compete for starter's job.

Cameron to move from Houston to Stoke City of EPL, pending work permit.

Bradley moves up in Italian Serie A to AS Roma.

Boyd moves from Dortmund to Rapid Vienna on three-year-deal.

Training injury sends Dempsey to sideline for end of record season.

Nearing 41, Friedel excels, continues to fuel Tottenham Champions League hopes.

From trying start, Jones becomes major contributor to Schalke's run into Champions League.

Tottenham nears Champions League entry behind solid play from Friedel.

Friedel, Spurs must quickly reverse trend for chance at Champions League.

Weeks ahead of schedule, Onyewu returns from injury and helps Sporting Lisbon win.

Altidore's two goals allow AZ Alkmaar to tie Twente 2-2.

Dempsey scores three goals in Fulham victories; interest from EPL powers grows.

Bradley scores first goal with Chievo in 3-2 victory over Catania.

Lichaj returns to score one, assist another, but Aston Villa loses to Chelsea.

Bocanegra is sent off, but Rangers delay Celtic championship celebration 3-2.

Jones scores winner, adds assist to send Schalke past Twente to Europa quarterfinals.

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Americans Abroad

Liverpool deal dashed, Fulham sends Dempsey to Tottenham Hotspur; Onyewu, Bocanegra move.

By Robert Wagman (in Washington, D.C.)
SoccerTimes

(Saturday, September 1, 2012) -- After last season when he set club goal-scoring records, United States midfielder Clint Dempsey -- with a year left on his Fulham contract -- turned down a new four-year pact and said he wanted to transfer to a team with prospects of making it into the European Champions League.

Dempsey wanted a bigger stage then Fulham was going to offer in the English Premier League. Fulham said it was willing to let Dempsey go, if the price was right.

This started a summer-long search for a new team for Dempsey, a search that at times was strained. It came down to the final 24 hours of the summer transfer period and Dempsey -- through some bizarre circumstances, got his wish, signing with Tottenham Hotspur, which missed the Champions League last season on a technicality.

Chelsea, which did not earn a 2012-13 Champions League spot with its position in the standings, took Spurs' EPL bid by winning the 2011-12 Champions League final.

It turns out that Dempsey ended up with Spurs because a deal with Liverpool failed to reach culmination in the final hours of the transfer period.

Various teams, both in England and elsewhere in Europe, made inquiries about Dempsey, but the price tag demanded by Fulham was simply too costly. However, one team that continued to pursue the high-scoring American was the Premier League's Liverpool, whose coach, Brendan Rodgers, said publicly he wanted Dempsey.

No formal offer for Dempsey was received by Fulham from Liverpool. Now, it has been revealed the problem was that Liverpool's American owners, the Fenway Sports Group -- owners of baseball's Boston Red Sox -- would not authorize the transfer payment. By all reports, the new owners, baseball guys all, cannot get their arms around the whole concept of teams having to pay other teams for players.

In the meantime, Dempsey, who thought he was heading for Merseyside, told one and all he would join Liverpool. He burned bridges at Fulham despite statements from the team's manager Martin Jol that Dempsey would be welcomed back with something approaching open arms. The fans at Craven Cottage turned against Dempsey and made his situation almost untenable.

As the transfer deadline loomed, Rodgers made multiple moves trying to make room for Dempsey and putting together an amount that Fulham would accept. Rodgers released three more players -- Charlie Adam, Jay Spearing and Nathan Eccleston, reducing his payroll some $12.7 million -- and he tried, but failed to move Daniel Pacheco to Real Valladolid and Danny Wilson to Blackpool.

At the same time, Fulham quietly agreed that it was open to accepting an offer for Dempsey considerably lower than the $17 million it had been demanding.

Rodgers' moves were still not enough for the Liverpool board of directors, so he made one final move that would have solved several problems. He offered Fulham midfielder Jordan Henderson on a season-long loan, a move that would have opened salary room at Liverpool and would have closed a hole Dempsey's absence opened at Fulham. Henderson refused to go and Rodgers pulled out of any further pursuit of Dempsey.

Meanwhile, with Fulham saying it was willing to take less for Dempsey, his transfer was put back into play. The first offer came from Aston Villa, but Dempsey said no. Then Dempsey's agent received a call from Spurs and things moved quickly.

Spurs offered $9.5 million and Fulham agreed. Dempsey quickly agreed to terms and signed a new three-year contract.

Dempsey reached out to the Fulham faithful. "I want to thank the fans for everything, some of the best memories I've had in football, and thank the chairman for giving me the opportunity to come from the (Major League Soccer) and compete over here," he said. "All I can say is thank you and now I'm looking forward to the next challenge."

Dempsey has not played yet this season, so his fitness is open to question. He also is likely to be called in by the U.S. for two upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Jamaica.

Meanwhile, Liverpool has only two veteran forwards -- Luis Suárez and Fabio Borini. If things do not go well for it this season, the Liverpool fans might turn against the American owners.

Two other last-minute deals involved Americans.

U.S. defender Oguchi Onyewu was loaned by Sporting Lisbon of Portugal to Spanish side Málaga. Thus, he will play in the 2012-13 Champions League.

The loan deal comes with a option to buy the American defender. In recent days, after Sporting put Onyewu on its transfer list, it heard from Anderlecht of Belgium, Bordeaux of France and Spain's Real Zaragoza.

Rangers FC defender Carlos Bocanegra has left Scotland to join Racing Santander of the Spanish second division on a season-long loan. He had turned down moves to Eintracht Frankfurt of the German Bundesliga and Greek side Olympiakos before a move to the newly-demoted Spanish club, which finished last in La Liga.

Bocanegra will wear No. 3 for Los Verdiblancos, who were relegated after going 22 straight games without a victory last season.


Robert Wagman is SoccerTimes senior correspondent.

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