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Klinsmann says Bradley, Dempsey moves “huge” for American soccer

Jan 15, 2014, 11:38 AM EDT

Toronto FC Introduce Jermain Defoe Getty Images

The Associated Press is reporting that Jurgen Klinsmann’s pretty jazzed about the return of Michael Bradley and Clint Dempsey to Major League Soccer.

Now, do you buy it?

Speaking from US camp in Sao Paolo, Klinsmann called the moves of Bradley to Toronto and Dempsey to Seattle “huge” for American soccer and part of his previously stated desire to see MLS as a one of the top leagues in the world. From the report:

Although Klinsmann indicated in the past he would rather see top American players testing themselves in top leagues overseas, he said Tuesday a stronger MLS benefits the national team.

“We said a couple of years ago that we wanted to be one day in the top 10, top 15 in the world,” said Klinsmann, a German who moved to California in 1998. “We have to develop better players, we have to develop better coaches, and it’s not going to happen overnight, but we will keep working and the MLS is helping us a lot.”

There are myriad political reasons for Klinsmann to endorse the moves even if he isn’t happy with them, and we know that he’s said he wants US men’s national teamers playing in the best leagues in the world. Yet it’s not the biggest leap to say his excitement for the Bradley move, at the very least, is real.

Yes, Bradley was training and getting some time on the pitch with AS Roma and surely a Defoe-style “announce transfer now but move for MLS season” would’ve worked better, but the midfielder was going to be the odd man out in Roma.

What do you think? Real, political or how much of a mix?

  1. dfstell - Jan 15, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    I can buy that Klinsmann is okay with these moves. I mean, both of these guys have pushed and taken chances in their careers…..and both probably found out what their ceiling was. Now that they know their ceiling, there is no shame in finding a club where they can play the full 90 and be a star.

    Jozy is in a similar situation. He took a chance leaving AZ and now we’re learning that he isn’t good enough to put a bad EPL club on his back and carry them. I might still like to see Jozy get a chance with a slightly better EPL club, but I don’t think he’s going to turn into a dominant striker for a Champions League side.

    Or even look at a guy like Parkhurst. He took a shot at a bigger club and it didn’t work out. Now he should just go somewhere and get to play.

    The guys I’d like to see push a little more at guys like Omar, Beasler, Zusi, etc.

    One thing that I don’t like about MLS is that the teams are all so uniform that they have no way to step up the quality without going overseas. For example, in England, it is obviously a step up in quality to go from Sunderland to Arsenal. That doesn’t really exist in MLS where all the teams are basically the same. If a player wants to challenge himself, he has to leave MLS.

  2. jucam1 - Jan 15, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    What’s he supposed to say?… “No, I am angry that instead of playing against true world class competition as a warm up to the WC, my two best players came home to play 3 levels below the class they were playing screwing up their form before the WC!” It is what it is, it does somewhat raise the level of play in the MLS, but what good does that do the USMNT this cup year?… I sort of get the Clint move, he’s on the down side if his career, but he could still cone off the bench and contribute in a legit league. The Bradley move makes no sense, he was a contributor for a decent team in a legit league. Why come out to pasture now instead of after the cup?… I mean the money isn’t that big. I guess i can’t judge, the money must be really enticing and he has to cash in while he can.

  3. schmutzdeck - Jan 15, 2014 at 1:35 PM


    JK is probably actually okay with these moves because he realizes that both Dempsey and Mikey were probably going to be marginal figures at Spurs and Roma if they were still there today.

    Dempsey is about as good as he is going to get so what he mostly needs is playing time to keep his sharpness and physical fitness.

    Mikey hit his peak at Chievo and at Roma when DDR was mostly out. Once DDR came back it seemed like Mikey began to diminish, going from MB90 to MB 30.

    It’s as if you get the best of Mikey when he is the Man like he was at Chievo and at Roma when DDR was out. Being the Man at TFC and in Brazil for the USMNT should bring out the best in him.

    Jozy is not in the same place as those two. I’ve watched many of his Sunderland games and he is a better all around player today than he was at AZ.

    Sunderland is looking to bring in the Argentinean forward Scocco. If they can get him then he will displace either Fletcher or Jozy. I see Fletcher as the more likely because he still has some value and I’m betting they can sell him in this transfer window. Jozy has less value.

    I see Jozy partnering up with Scocco, if he comes, and remaining an important player for Sunderland, one who will get a lot of playing time in the second half.

    If Sunderland continues to improve, as it looks like they will, Jozy has a shot at developing even further.
    He has not had the chance to play as much as Deuce and Mikey did when they were his age. Hopefully Sunderland will stay up because Jozy still has a lot to learn. Now if Fletcher stays and Scocco comes in forget everything I just wrote about Jozy.

  4. boscoesworld - Jan 15, 2014 at 7:23 PM

    What goes Thump, Thump, Thump OW? Yes an MLS game. About as much finesse as 14 year old boy at a school dance.

    • midtec2005 - Jan 15, 2014 at 8:05 PM

      Someone hasn’t watched an MLS game in about 5 years…

    • schmutzdeck - Jan 15, 2014 at 9:42 PM


      If you take lessons it will go better next. year.

      It’s worth the money and will build up your self esteem.

      Don’t let it get you down.

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