The Philadelphia Union have made no secret of the fact that Freddy Adu has played his final game for the club and is no longer wanted be the team. They have been actively looking to deal him to another MLS club or sell him overseas in the hopes of getting his fairly large salary off their books before the 2013 season gets underway.
One of the places that they reportedly tried to trade the player who was supposed to be the savior of US soccer was Toronto FC. It was reportedly by Brotherly Game that the Union were in talks to send the 24 year old attack to TFC but that no deal was in place yet.
Adu does have some connections to the new staff at Toronto FC from his early playing days at D.C. United where he played alongside Ryan Nelsen and was initially drafted by Kevin Payne. That is the part of the report that makes sense from a Toronto perspective but that is just about the only part that does.
Why would Toronto ship out Eric Hassli just to bring in another over-priced attacker and this time one who has a far less impressive track record of contributing in MLS. Adu has a bad reputation and his attitude and work rate have been cited as reasons why he is no longer wanted in Philly so why would TFC want to take that on? The club has been insistent on the fact that they are going to develop a new culture and somehow I don't see any possible way that Adu fits into the culture.
The other issue with the report is that in comes in the wake of some twitter fun by a certain Bobby Brizzo who has been active in creating #FreddyAdu4TFC over the past few days as a joke. There is certainly some amusement to be found in that twitter stream but I would be stunned if there was any facts there or insider knowledge to go along with the fun jokes.
That stream alone is enough to raise enough questions about the article on Brotherly Game and has actually caused a lot of people around Toronto to dismiss the reports right off the bat as just being the site falling from Brizzo's joke. It is worth at least considering the reports though as just because someone makes a joke does not mean it suddenly becomes impossible for them to be right. Even some of the now infamous "ITK" twitter accounts ended up hitting on the occasional wild guess.
So let's just take the report for what it is and assume that Philly at the very least did try to offer Adu to Toronto. It would make sense because they would be offering him to everyone and maybe the Payne connection is enough to get TFC to at least see what kind of deal they could work out.
Problem is that Freddy Adu seemingly does not want to stay in MLS and he and his agent are blocking a move to any other club in hopes of securing a move back overseas for the player. That much we learned yesterday from a series of tweets by Philly based journalist Jonathan Tannewald.
... I was told that there is no truth to the reports of a potential deal between the Union and Toronto FC to trade Adu.— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) February 3, 2013
There have been offers for Adu from multiple MLS teams but I am told that Adu and his agent have turned them all down.— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) February 3, 2013
That is a pretty staunch denial and will probably be the end of the matter. If Adu and his camp are not interested in moving to another MLS club and they have the option to block such a move in his contract TFC could be as interested as they want and it won't matter.
TFC could very well have been one of the MLS teams that did put in an offer for the player and might have been working on a deal with the Union to make such a move happen. It is possible that Bobby made an amusing joke on twitter, Brotherly Game reported things that were actually true, and then Tannewald came along and provided the most important piece of the puzzle.
The good news, for the many TFC fans who would hate such a deal, is that the odds of Freddy Adu joining the club are almost non-existent. It really would leave a lot of folks scratching their heads if the club did ship Hassli out just to bring in a similar sort of problem in Adu but for now it seems we won't have to worry about that taking place.