The man they call the General went through a transition in the offseason of 2014-2015. With face of the franchise player Jermain Defoe leaving, Bradley was temporarily the lone face of Toronto FC. Yet another year of playoff dreams turned sour and Bradley looked to be one who was going to need to step up next season to drive star power and results at BMO field.
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Despite always living in the American soccer spotlight, the bright lights and camera interviews never looked like Bradley's strong suit. Coming off cold and tense in interviews, could Bradley carry this franchise on the field and in front of cameras all season long? Enter Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore. With Toronto's newest and flashiest DPs hogging the camera time, Bradley could concentrate on improving his game, and improve he did.
A slight jump from from 2014, Bradley tallied five goals and six assists in 2015 - three more goals and two more assists in the same number of games. With Greg Vanney allowing Bradley to play farther up the pitch to support the attack he was able spread the ball around in the final third of the pitch and support his other attacking teammates. Bradley's statement game came against Orlando City where he exploited the Lions' defense with deep piercing runs and cutting passes to get three assists in a 5-0.
With free reign in the centre of the pitch last season, Bradley will likely play in a more structured role with Johnson added to the roster for next season. The middle of the field will be the most complex for Bradley, and Vanney to figure out ensuring that the midfield stars are being used to their strengths.
While Bradley has played a more defensive role with the USMNT, it has not been his preferred or the best use of his abilities as many American Outlaws will tell you. But this could be an option for him if Vanney decides to play with Osorio and Johnson farther up the pitch, but do not expect an increase in goals scored next season with Johnson providing Bradley support in the midfield.
Overall it was another strong season for the Reds' captain as he looks to 2016. Next season look for Bradley to drive team play and make those around him better versus improving his individual game.