Clint Dempsey's on-field demeanor didn't seem particularly bothered by losing the captain's armband to Michael Bradley and, speaking publicly about it for the first time since the move was announced, his postgame mood seemed similarly unbothered. That Dempsey scored and the United States beat Guatemala 4-0 on Friday in their final warmup before the Gold Cup probably didn't hurt his mood, either.
"Michael is a great leader. He deserves to be captain. And, for me, I'm just excited to be a part of the team and try to push to win the Gold Cup and being a part of the Confederations Cup.
"I got to experience being captain at the World Cup. For me, that was something special, something I will always remember. It's been a big thing for me to be captain, even with the club team, Seattle. For me, it's not all about that. It's just about the team, about trying to win games and about trying to do something special."
Dempsey was a bit less forthcoming when the subject turned to the ban that has cost him three league games with the Sounders and will keep him out of the U.S. Open Cup for at least two more years.
"That's something I put behind me," Dempsey said. "I talked with my teammates. I talked coaches. I'm just focused on moving forward, focused on the Gold Cup, making sure we win it and put ourselves in a position to qualify for the Gold Cup."