Roma (Serie A)
#6 | Midfielder
July 31, 1987 (Age: 26)
Princeton, New Jersey
6' 1", 165 lbs (1.85 m, 75 kg)
Following time with youth side Chicago Sockers and four semesters at Bradenton Academy, Bradley was signed to a Project-40 deal by MLS and selected by the New York club formerly known as MetroStars in 2004. Many general managers will now be embarrassed that the midfielder was allowed to fall to the fourth round, where he was grabbed at #36 by dad Bob, coach of the Big Apple bunch.
After a foot injury wiped out his 2004 season and a January trial with Dutch side Heerenveen, Bradley began his MLS career in the spring of 2005. The rookie, initially considered a nepotism pick by some observers, led the MetroStars by starting each of his 30 games and finished just outside the league top 10 in minutes played. The boss's son scored a goal and added four assists during the regular season, then started each of the playoff contests against New England.
In January of 2006, Bradley returned for another Heerenveen look and the club were convinced to swing a deal with MLS. After arriving for an undisclosed fee, the teenager signed a three-and-a-half year deal at the Abe Lenstra.
The youngster debuted with a goal for Young Heerenveen in February, and by April was making his first Eredivisie start in their season ending loss to AZ Alkmaar. Bradley then started each playoff game as the Frisians clinched a UEFA Cup berth for the 2006/07 campaign.
The 2007-2008 season proved to be a prolific one for Bradley as he scored 20 goals in all competitions including 16 Eredivisie goals. This scoring streak gave Bradley the distinction of having the record for most goals scored by an American playing in a European first division. Bradley shattered the previous record held by former Fulman player Brian McBride.
Bradley parlayed his success in the Netherlands by signing a four year contract with German Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach. Bradley made his Bundesliga debut in September of 2008 and two months later endeared himself to fans with a 81st minute header to help earn a 2-2 tie against powerhouse Bayern Munich. Bradley's good form has continued in 2009 which included scoring two goals in a game versus Cologne.
The 2009 Bundesliga season was one of consolidation for Bradley. After spending a few early games on the bench, he has worked himself back into Monchengladbach's starting lineup. By the time the season had worn to an end in May, Bradley had made 29 appearances and scored two goals.
A series of good performances at the 2010 World Cup earned Bradley accolades and inevitably jolted the transfer rumor mill into action. Despite the usual flurry of post-World Cup chatter, no serious transfer bids were publicized and Bradley remains in the Bundesliga with Monchengladbach for the '10-'11 season.
Beset by a terrible injury crisis, Monchengladbach had a disastrous first half of the next season. Although Bradley himself received high marks for his play, the team leaked goals and went into the winter break in dead last.
After requesting a transfer, Bradley was loaned to Aston Villa until the end of the season. Bradley's second-half loan did not go according to plan as the midfielder made just three short substitute appearances during his stint at Villa Park.
Bradley returned to Monchengladbach, but found himself out of the club's plans. Two days before the transfer deadline, he moved to Serie A, signed with Chievo.
After a strong debut year in Serie A, AS Roma came calling and Bradley signed a new deal in Italy's capital.
Bradley had experience with both the US Under-17 and Under-20 teams before then-coach Bruce Arena called the youngster into World Cup 2006 prep camp in North Carolina. The Heerenveen prodigy was brought in as a practice player, but ended up getting his first two international caps with cameos in the final two Send-Off Series matches against Venezuela and Latvia.
The youngster then added caps against Ecuador and Guatemala in March of 2007, playing under father Bob, the new USMT coach. Bradley was part of the 2007 Gold Cup winning squad but did not see the pitch in the final against Mexico due to a red card in the semifinal versus Canada.
Beginning in 2008, Bradley became a mainstay of the USMNT starting six of the eight games played by the U.S. and going the full 90 minutes in four of those games. There has been no let up in 2009 as Bradley's two goals were the difference in the U.S. 2-0 victory over Mexico in a World Cup qualifier played at a frigid Columbus, OH. Bradley rocketed a shot just inside the six-yard line to score before halftime and put away the Mexican team with an injury-time strike from outside the penalty box.
The 2009 season saw Bradley continue his entrenchment in the US midfield, starting 12 of the United States' 24 games. His strong play was apparent early, as he led the US to a 2-0 victory over Mexico at Columbus Crew Stadium in February. Bradley scored both goals in that game.
With the United States facing elimination from the Confederations Cup against Egypt in June, Bradley's knack for goals came in handy as he scored his 3rd international goal of the year in the 3-0 win that sent the United States on to the semifinals. Unfortunately, Bradley's tough tackling got him ejected from the semifinal win over FIFA #1 Spain, costing him his place in the team for the final game against Brazil.
Bradley's final goal of the calendar year came in October against Costa Rica, who the United States tied 2-2 in its final World Cup qualifying game.
The midfielder went on to play every minute in the United States' run to the second round in the 2010 World Cup. Bradley got on the scoresheet in the second game the group phase, scoring a critical equalizer in the fading minutes against Slovenia.