Updates from Friday, May 30
Kyle McCarthy of Fox Sports has the latest update on Dempsey's injury:
Clint Dempsey (groin) said he participated in training fully today. #USMNT— Kyle McCarthy (@kylejmccarthy) May 30, 2014
Updates from Thursday, May 29
Janie McAuley of the Associated Press has the latest news on Dempsey:
U.S. captain Clint Dempsey's sore left groin has improved, and coach Jurgen Klinsmann plans to start him in the Americans' second World Cup warmup this weekend against Turkey.
The 23 players geared up for their final workout at Stanford on Thursday, a quick session in the pool, before leaving the Bay Area to fly east. Klinsmann said Dempsey was still slightly limited in his movements by design during Wednesday's training, avoiding any sideways cuts or runs to avoid re-aggravating the groin. But the coach said Dempsey "definitely" will start Sunday at Red Bull Arena,
"A lot of work yesterday. We kind of made sure he's not going sideways. That was kind of bothering him and worrying him a little bit," Klinsmann said. "He's all good. Today they have an easy regen day, travel day. So by tomorrow full speed in training. Everything is good."
"If something gets worse now the first 30 minutes or whatever, then you know what, there's no reason why we should risk now anything," Klinsmann said. "It was not really risk, but it was a lot of work they put in here the last 2 1/2 weeks, so we just decided there on the field, c'mon, it's good (OK to sit him). But he's ready to go."
The United States will be without their captain when they take on Azerbaijan Tuesday night.
The Seattle Sounders attacking midfielder/forward suffered a groin strain and was replaced in the lineup by Chris Wondolowski, per U.S. Soccer:
Grant Wahl of Sports Illustrated allayed fans' fears when he reported that coach Jurgen Klinsmann opted to keep Dempsey out for precautionary reasons:
Dempsey out of lineup with sore groin, Wondo in. Dempsey removal said to be precautionary. Howard captain.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) May 28, 2014
FOX Soccer adds encouraging detail to Dempsey's situation:
Klinsmann to ESPN on Clint Dempsey: "He's alright. He has a bit of a groin problem. ... You don't want to risk anything." #usmnt— FOX Soccer Trax (@FOXSoccerTrax) May 28, 2014
Wahl also added encouragement following the USMNT's win over Azerbaijan:
Klinsmann: Dempsey groin issue "not serious at all." Expects him to be ready for Turkey.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) May 28, 2014
Dempsey is one of the few untouchable players in the United States 23-man roster that's going to Brazil for the 2014 World Cup. Playing him in a friendly against Azerbaijan when he's not 100 percent wouldn't make any sense.
Klinsmann wouldn't learn anything about Dempsey's performance on Tuesday that he didn't already know before, so you can understand why he was kept out of the lineup.
Since the injury doesn't appear to be serious, it wouldn't seem that the American star is a doubt at all for the World Cup, which is great news as the U.S. tries to navigate what is one of the toughest groups in the competition.