Freddy Adu put together a couple of solid performances for the US Soccer Team at the CONCACAF Gold Cup which have seemed to raise his stock. Adu, who has been playing for Rizespor in the Turkish second-division will return to Benfica of Portugal who have his contract rights for their preseason. His agent Richard Motzkin says there is interest for Freddy from a number of different clubs but what’s the best fit?
Adu could find another club in Europe but his prior experiences with this have been decidedly unrewarding. Despite his re-emergence on the USMNT scene, it seems unlikely that he will become a fixture at Benfica who have loaned him out at every opportunity. The most likely scenario is for Adu to get loaned out again and join another lower-tier European team on a 1-year contract. Freddy would certainly be better off coming back to the United States and joining a struggling MLS squad.
What does Freddy need? A team where he can get consistent playing time sooner rather than later. He needs to show he can be a game changer for more than a couple of appearances.
What does the MLS need? Talented attacking players who will get people out to the stadiums. Who would be a better fit than Freddy who is one of the few American players with a ton of name recognition. Teams like Colorado Rapids, Columbus Crew, and Sporting Kansas City would be excellent fits. Much like the Beckham effect, people will come out to see what all the hype is about.
It would be an opportunity for Freddy to reinvent himself and energize an MLS franchise at the same time. Sure, it would be great if he had a good fit with a top European side but that’s not the reality. He would be much better served with a team that has a long-term vision and isn’t just interested because he put two solid games together is back in the headlines.
Why not loan Freddy to an MLS squad for the rest of the Summer? Playing games is always better preparation than working out on your own. A solid follow-up in the MLS to his Gold Cup performance would raise his stock and show people he’s for real.
Freddy’s drive to be a top professional in Europe is admirable but increasingly unlikely. That’s not to say he can have a successful professional career in the United States or elsewhere. The expectations around Freddy have been so enormous that everything seems like a failure. Coming back to the U.S. would be a chance for him to change the story.
Freddy garnered all the attention when he came on the scene at 16, much to the dismay of more established players. He could change all this by returning and becoming a leader for his team and the league. The MLS is finally showing signs of real life and everyone in the American soccer family needs to get behind it.
Read more:Freddy Adu and the Long Road