Bradley “Seized” Opportunity with Toronto

Former Roma midfielder Michael Bradley spoke today regarding his move to MLS outfit Toronto F.C.

“For me, it was a thing I had gotten to a point at Roma, now with a new coach, he clearly had his ideas on who he wanted to play when everyone was healthy and to move the team forward and, look, I was really happy there,” Bradley said. “The club is fantastic, my family and I enjoyed living in Rome, but at a certain point it was just kind of like what am I going to do here?

“Am I going to stay here for another however many years and play 15-20 games a season, or go somewhere where I’m going to be challenged every day to take big responsibility, to really force and help my team to win? Obviously everybody is wired differently. Everybody has different things that motivate them. For me, the chance to come here and be a part of what’s going on in North America — I said I want to be a part of it and to not let this opportunity pass me by.”

“For me, the decision was two-fold,” Bradley said. “The opportunity to go to Toronto F.C., a club that has ridiculous potential as far as the city it’s in, the training ground and the stadium, the fans, everything is there for it to be one of the premier clubs in M.L.S. and North America. And obviously everyone there can admit that it’s not gone the way they hoped. And now, in the last year since Tim Leiweke arrived trying to understand how to rebuild things from the bottom up. Speaking with Tim Leiweke and everyone in Toronto I just got an incredible feeling, really a motivation in regards to what they’re trying to do.

“The challenge of now being a part of trying to build something, build something special, something that can stand up over a number of years, that part, that challenge is something that motivates me an incredible amount. So for me, there was the Toronto side of it. The day-to-day part of building a winning club, a club that can now stand with the Galaxys and Red Bulls as the top club in North America. That’s my motivation.

“Being a big part of that trying to take a lot of responsibility and put it on my shoulders on the field and off the field and all that entails. And the other side is what’s going on with soccer in this country, in North America. People talk about M.L.S. like it’s a retirement league. For it not to be a retirement league at a certain point you need players who are willing to come when they’re in their primes. When they still have their best years ahead of them. And able to step on field every single game and leave everything out there, and this isn’t just a place where guys can come at end of their careers to enjoy themselves.”

Source(s): New York Times

The Editor of, John has been covering Italian football as a freelance journalist for over 10 years and has appeared in various publications including,, and ESPN.