Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
U.S. stars drink from the MLS money faucet
by Paul Kennedy, January 8th, 2014 8:03PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  americans abroad, men's national team, mls

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS SPOTLIGHT] Who'd have thought it possible? Just five months after Clint Dempsey's move to Seattle, Michael Bradley is likely to return to MLS. Reports that he's in negotiations to leave Roma for Toronto FC aren't shocking. What is are the money figures being thrown about.

Jeff Carlisle reported Wednesday afternoon at ESPNFC.com that Bradley was, according to sources, set to sign a long-term contract with Toronto for an annual salary in the neighborhood of $6.5 million -- about five times what he was believed to be making at Roma.

Dempsey immediately became the highest-paid player in MLS when he made guaranteed income of in excess of $5 million in 2013.

The situations of both players are strikingly similar.

Both are ambitious players who sought to make it to the top of European soccer. Both came close -- Tottenham, for Dempsey, and Roma, for Bradley -- though neither club was in the Champions League this season.

The careers of both players didn't exactly stall, but the writing was pretty much on the wall.

For Dempsey, it came as Spurs aggressively pursued new signings on the transfer market last summer after its fifth-place finish.

Only days before Dempsey's shock move to MLS, new Roma coach, Frenchman Rudi Garcia, praised Bradley as "a great ambassador" for American soccer in Europe and "a very important player, that's for sure" after the MLS All-Star Game in Kansas City.

But bad luck hit Bradley when he slipped and turned his ankle badly on the wet grass before the Costa Rica World Cup qualifier in September. Without him, Roma raced out to a big lead in Serie A, and young Dutch signing Kevin Strootman settled into midfield.

Defending champion Juventus has since overtaken Roma, opening up an eight-point lead with Sunday's 3-0 win in a match that saw Bradley remain on the bench. With Belgian midfielder Radja Nainggolan on his way to Roma this week on loan from Cagliari, Bradley just moved one spot down the bench.

Dempsey, who had left Fulham for Tottenham in 2012, could have played for other teams in the EPL, but it would likely meant a move for him, his wife and two children out of London.

At 26, Bradley is four years younger than Dempsey, but he's been in Europe eight years and Roma is his fifth European club. Bradley and his wife, Amanda, a former University of Rhode Island tennis player, have a 1-year-old son with the very Italian name of Luca.



With American wives and young children, family considerations are important, and the decision to return to MLS becomes an easy one when teams like Seattle and Toronto suddenly open the faucet and start offering big money no European club will ever match.


2 comments
  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: January 9, 2014 at 12:45 p.m.
    Dempsey is highly overpaid while Bradley brings a more compelling game-set to the pitch.
  1. Allan Lindh
    commented on: January 9, 2014 at 3:35 p.m.
    Dempsey is more limited, without skill players around him -- like in Seattle -- he flounders. Bradley is a strong mid-fielder, more capable of shaping play, he'll bring some order and strength to a weak Toronto side.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Video Pick: Lewy volleys twice for Bayern    
Bayern Munich is the Bundesliga "fall champion" thanks to a 2-1 comeback win over Freiburg on ...
What They're Saying: Joe Greenspan    
"Luckily, the higher ups in the Navy and the government made the decision to say we ...
Orlando City: Kaka has no plans of leaving    
Kaka says offseason reports out of Brazil that he'll leave Orlando City at the end of ...
Canada: Ten MLS players named for Bermuda friendly    
Toronto FC teammates Jonathan Osorio and Tosiant Ricketts lead a Canada squad that includes younger players ...
MLS Expansion: Tuesday is key day for stadium projects    
MLS expansion bidders are rushing to garner support for their stadium plans before the league's Jan. ...
MLS Business: MNUFC hits Target with jersey sponsor    
That famous bulls-eye known to shoppers around the country will be prominently displayed on an MLS ...
What They're Saying: Arsene Wenger    
"Offside is what makes the team be together. It's a big quality of a team sport. ...
MLS Moves: Galaxy uses TAM again on Joao Pedro    
In the space of just a few days, the Galaxy has completely revamped its midfield. After ...
Datebook: MLS preseason schedules    
MLS players will begin returning to their clubs as soon as Saturday. For the day-by-day preseason ...
Video Pick: Coaches make fools of themselves    
Honduras coach Jorge Luis Pinto and his Panama counterpart Bolillo Gomez fail the role-model test when ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives