Fulham boss Jol plays hardball with Clint Dempsey ahead of Norwich City visit

Fulham boss Martin Jol has vowed not to let freescoring midfielder Clint Dempsey go on the cheap after leaving the American out of tomorrow's Premier League opener against Norwich.

The 29-year-old scored in the Cottagers' win in last season's corresponding fixture but has been heavily touted with a summer move to Liverpool. Dempsey has played little or no part in Fulham's pre-season build up but Jol is ready to play hard ball despite the midfielder only having a year left on his current Craven Cottage deal.

'Clint was not involved over the last four weeks so he is not going to be in the squad,' said Jol, with Fulham officials confirming on Friday afternoon the American had been fined for refusing to play for the Cottagers.

'He is not committed to the club. He wants to leave. I would like to keep him, but I think it's impossible. It's a sad and an almost embarrassing situation. There was never an offer (from Liverpool). Clint himself told everyone he was going to Liverpool before he came back so we really thought there was quite a firm interest in him.

'Our people never had an offer on the table, so it's almost embarrassing. If you have shown interest in a player, especially in England, you have to follow it up with an offer. They didn't.

'Maybe Liverpool will come back. I can assure you that our chairman is strong enough. At first we didn't want to get rid of him, later on we had to change our position. But our view is that we won't let Clint Dempsey go on the cheap, that's for sure.'