Clint Dempsey

Herculez Gomez returns from Copa America duties, praises Clint Dempsey's USMNT mettle

TUKWILA, Wash. – Following his foray into the world of broadcasting, Herculez Gomez is back with the Seattle Sounders.

The veteran forward – well known for his charismatic personality and media savvy ways – had been working as a guest commentator for FOX Sports’ coverage of the ongoing Copa America Centenario.

With the Sounders back at training following their brief break for the tournament, Gomez spoke with reporters on Thursday at Starfire Sports in Tukwila, talking about his experience as a media member and also offering up some thoughts on the performance of the U.S. men’s national team.

“I respect you guys a little now,” Gomez joked with media members. “[Broadcasting is] a tough job. I didn’t realize everything it entailed and how much work actually goes into it. It’s mentally draining. It’s exhausting. It’s a lot of work and preparation, it’s nerve-racking. But along with all that chaotic mess, I enjoyed it.”

Although Gomez says his first experience as a member of the media was a positive one, he also said it felt good to be back on the field with his Seattle teammates.

“It feels pretty natural,” he said. “This is what I’ve been doing my whole life. It’s fun, it’s good to see the guys. We had a few laughs and it made me realize how much I missed the locker room and everything. It’s good to be back, it’s good to start touching the ball around again and competing. That’s what I love most.”

Gomez also praised the performance of Sounders teammate and USMNT forward Clint Dempsey, who scored his 50th career international goal with a 9th-minute penalty kick in the US’s 4-0 group stage romp over Costa Rica on Tuesday.  

Gomez said he felt that the game was something of a statement performance from Dempsey, who had seen his role with the national team questioned by some pundits who speculated that the U.S. squad could benefit from plugging a younger player into his starting position.

“I love Clint,” Gomez said. “He’s a fighter. I respect a player like that. You guys won’t be surprised, but players read everything. They listen to everything. They watch everything. They know when they’re being called out. I think he took it personal and I absolutely love that.

“He went out and sent a message that he’s not going anywhere,” he added. “If you’re a young guy trying to take his spot, he’s still here.”



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