Dempsey answers striker shortage
Tottenham forward Clint Dempsey has claimed he can solve the club's striker shortage and keep Spurs on course for a return to the Champions League.
Many of the club's supporters have been bemused by manager Andre Villas-Boas's constant suggestions that Dempsey is the third striker in his squad alongside Jermain Defoe and Emmanuel Adebayor, even though the American international has long been viewed as an attacking midfielder.
Yet Dempsey has insisted he is capable of playing as a lead front man, with his last gasp equaliser in the 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Sunday cementing his claims to a regular spot in attack.
"I can play up front," he said in the Daily Mirror. "I can hold the play up, but also I can play in a role that is a little bit withdrawn, getting balls in the pocket a little bit and get on the half-turn.
"I can do pressing in a 4-4-2 but defensively I feel comfortable dropping back and putting in a shift by getting in the holding midfield and creating problems for the opposition.
"Now it's about trying to create more chances in the attacking third, whether it is getting goals or getting assists. This is a difficult team to break into and every time you get to play you have to make sure you take advantage of it."
Dempsey admits he was disappointed by his first few months at Tottenham following his transfer deadline day move from Fulham back in August, but he believes he is finding his feet at last.
"I feel I have been on a good run of form," he said. "For me, it was a slow start to the season, so it is good to be chipping in with goals and repaying the club for their belief in me.
"We have a lot of quality in our side and a lot of belief in ourselves. We've got confidence from the quality we have and also from the competition, so everybody is fighting to get into this line-up. "We are still in fourth position and the goal for this season is to qualify for the Champions League."
Despite Dempsey's optimism, Tottenham are still being linked with a move for a striker in the January transfer window, with Adebayor currently away on African Nations Cup duty with Togo and Defoe's goalscoring form deserting him in recent weeks.