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Dempsey to miss Sounders game due to irregular heartbeat



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TUKWILA, Wash. (AP) — Seattle Sounders and U.S. national team forward Clint Dempsey will miss Sunday's MLS match against Portland as he undergoes evaluations for an irregular heartbeat.

The Sounders announced Dempsey's status Friday, two days before their Cascadia showdown against the Timbers. He will miss at least Sunday's game but his status beyond that is still to be determined.

Dempsey played 90 minutes and scored two goals in Seattle's 3-1 win over Portland last Sunday. He did not make the trip to Houston for the Sounders' midweek game, remaining in Seattle, although the team said that decision was made separately from the irregular heartbeat issue. The team said: "As the medical process unfolds and information is gathered internally, no other details are being made publicly available at this time."

Seattle general manager Garth Lagerwey said a timetable on Dempsey's potential return won't be known until all the evaluations are complete. He said the irregular heartbeat is something the team has been monitoring during the season and the club is now waiting on the recommendations of doctors on how to proceed.

"Everybody here — us, U.S. Soccer, Clint — we're all on the same page," Lagerwey said at practice Friday. "Let's get to the bottom of this, let's see what's going on and let's do what's best for Clint."

Dempsey is in his fourth season with the Sounders and has eight goals and two assists. Seattle is unbeaten in its last five matches as it tries to get back into playoff contention in the Western Conference.

"Clint has given a great service to this club and we owe him an equal measure of respect and support as we go through this medical evaluation," Lagerwey said.

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The Associated Press

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