England got their South Africa 2010 campaign off to a flyer when captain Steven Gerrard gave them the lead inside four minutes, but the US hit back through Dempsey, with a big helping hand from England goalkeeper Robert Green, to snatch a draw.
And the Fulham forward admits he is somewhat baffled as to how top Premier League players failed to perform. "Honestly it seemed during the game that they were dealing with a lot of pressure," Dempsey told The Sun.
"I don't know why that is, you could just sense it a little bit. Even though they did score early, when we came back and equalised, they just seemed edgy.
"You wouldn't think that would be the case for some of the best players in the world, in teams of the quality of Chelsea or Liverpool, winning the Champions League or the title. You would think these players would be full of confidence.
"It could have just been the opening game and you would have to ask them if it affected their performance. But I think they're a team with quality and they should play with confidence."
Green gifted Dempsey the equaliser and the delighted 27-year-old admits he has little sympathy for the keeper. "It's probably a save he should have made. I didn't expect it to go in.
"When you hit it, you're kinda like 'Mmmm does it have a chance?' and then you see the keeper mishandle it and you're excited."