U.S. star Bradley joins Toronto FC from Roma

United States international Michael Bradley (pictured) was acquired by Toronto FC from Italy's Roma on January 13, 2014. (Photo: Mexsport)

TORONTO -- Toronto FC announced Monday that it has reached a transfer agreement with Italian Serie A club AS Roma to acquire United States international midfielder Michael Bradley.

The 26-year-old was introduced at a press conference alongside England international forward Jermain Defoe, who is joining the Major League Soccer side from Tottenham Hotspur.

“To acquire a star midfielder like Michael Bradley, seen by many as the top American player in the world, alongside a premier striker in Jermain Defoe, makes this a groundbreaking day for Toronto FC and for Major League Soccer,” said Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment President and CEO Tim Leiweke.  “We have worked hard this off-season to deliver a winning team to our fans and I would like to thank AS Roma and MLSE ownership for their commitment and support.”

Bradley, the son of former U.S. head coach Bob Bradley, turned pro at the age of 16 with the MetroStars, scoring one goal in 30 appearances during his one season with the club.  In January 2006, Bradley was sold to Dutch Eredivisie club SC Heerenveen, where he played in more than 50 matches, scoring 21 combined goals in his final season there before signing for Germany’s Borussia Moenchengladbach in January, 2008.  

Bradley spent three seasons with the German club, where he made 76 combined appearances and scored ten goals.  He went on a brief loan spell to Aston Villa in January 2011 and then signed with Italian Serie A club, Chievo Verona in August, 2011, and went on to make 35 appearances for the club, scoring one goal.  He joined Roma in July, 2012, making 41 league appearances and netting one goal.

Bradley has earned 81 caps for the United States and has scored 11 goals. His international debut came on May 26, 2006, in a friendly match against Venezuela.  Bradley has represented the U.S. at two CONCACAF Gold Cups, winning the title in 2007 and finishing as runner-up in 2011.

At the 2010 FIFA World Cup, he scored a goal in a 2-2 draw against Slovenia.