Clint Dempsey on His Heart, His Career and Another Chance at a Title

“I started getting symptoms in February, having palpitations where my heart was beating fast and I didn’t really understand why that was happening,” he said. “And as the year was progressing we were trying to figure out what was going on, doing all different kinds of tests. And it wasn’t until after Copa América that I got a chip — a monitor — put in my chest.”

Dempsey said his diagnosis ended months of frustration and worry. “When they put the monitor in and they were able to figure out what the problem was, that was kind of the most reassuring thing — that it’s not going to affect your life.”

Ted S. Warren/Associated Press

It was the monitor that allowed medical professionals to spot an anomaly during one Sounders game. It was deemed significant enough to put Dempsey on the season-ending injury list, just as his team was hitting the form that swept it to its first M.L.S. championship.

Amid the emotions of the end of that campaign, Dempsey found himself beginning a longer personal journey, one where progress would be — at best —…

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