The news of Michael Bradley and Jermain Defoe reportedly being close to finalizing their moves to Toronto FC from Roma and Tottenham (respectively) has been the top transfer buzz regarding MLS. With both set for "big" money moves from Europe to MLS we could soon see other clubs breaking the bank to bring in some quality talent from Europe.
The Jermain Defoe to Toronto rumors have been going ever since the end of the summer transfer window and really amped up again around October 2013, but with a series cryptic videos released by Toronto FC on their YouTube channel called "It's A Bloody Big Deal" it seems sure that the Englishman will be unveiled as a Toronto FC player on January 13, 2014.
If the news of Jermain Defoe coming to MLS was widely known, the recent breaking news of Michael Bradley being close to a MLS move was the exact opposite. Bradley who has fell out of favor at Roma should complete his move to Toronto any day soon now according to reports. This is a semi big deal for the United States soccer scene. On one hand, one of our best and brightest players is leaving a top european club for MLS, on the other it shows that it's possible our top US players can't handle the biggest stages in Europe. Just recently we have seen Clint Dempsey join Seattle Sounders after an okay season with Tottenham.
What does the potential move of Michael Bradley mean for MLS? Some may argue that it shows that MLS is a destination for players that are in their prime, and maybe the players it attracts aren't "World Class" players, but they are still good players nonetheless. Others may argue that it shows a weakness. If you aren't cutting it at your current club you can run back to MLS and be embraced with open arms because it seems that you are returning home to grow your sport. I honestly believe it is a mistake for Bradley to move to Toronto, and that he should have tried to force a move to another club playing in a top european league.
Regardless, Toronto FC may just be laying the foundation for the future when it relates to MLS clubs. Spend big, bring in talent from overseas, and expand your brand...or at least create a media buzz around you.