TORONTO, Ont.,—Toronto FC officially announced Thursday morning that the club and captain Michael Bradley have agreed to terms on a new TAM contract that will see the midfielder stay in Toronto.
It’s been a ride, cap… but there’s still more silverware to lift.— Toronto FC (@TorontoFC) December 12, 2019
Let's run it back. pic.twitter.com/LHQlZXSrqV
The contract will be a three-year deal with Bradley taking a significant pay cut from the $6.5 million he earned last season to stay in Toronto. Under the 2019 CBA, TAM signings may make a maximum of roughly $1.5 million per season, which is what Bradley is expected to come in at.
“Michael Bradley has led this club in the biggest games we’ve played in during his time at Toronto FC and is our engine,” Toronto FC President Bill Manning told TorontoFC.ca. “Michael and his family have made Toronto their home and we are all very happy that they will continue to be part of our club for years to come.”
Bradley, 32, has made 200 appearances for the Reds since joining the club in 2014 from AS Roma. Over that span, he’s provided 16 assists while finding the back of the net 13 times himself. However, Bradley’s impact as a holding midfielder for this franchise and city stretches well beyond the stat sheet.
The American, along with Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore, led Toronto — a city who desperately craved success — to their first taste of post-season soccer in 2015. In fact, since being appointed captain in 2015, the box-to-box midfielder has made the playoffs in every year except 2018, including leading the club to three MLS Cup Finals in the past four seasons — capped off by securing the treble in 2017.
“I feel so attached to the city of Toronto, the club, the team. I love it here and I am really proud of what we’ve been able to do over the past six years,” said Toronto FC captain Michael Bradley. “Beyond the success, I am equally as proud of the mentality and identity this club has taken on. The relationship between the club and the city, the club and the fans are both very special and I’m proud to have played a part in that. What we have in Toronto doesn’t exist everywhere.
“My family and I are so happy to remain in Toronto and we’d like to thank everyone at Toronto FC for ensuring that this process was done quietly and professionally behind the scenes. I’m looking forward to continuing to play in the biggest games and competing for trophies every year.”
Bradley’s return signifies the Reds’ desire to once again return to the promise land after falling short in the 2019 Finals to the Seattle Sounders, yet again.
Notably, in his end-of-season press conference, the 32-year-old Bradley stressed that financial terms were never an issue in these upcoming negotiations, and it actually appears the skipper may have left some money on the table to provide the Toronto FC front office with some further flexibility to make impactful additions.
Along with some of his teammates and management, Bradley has stressed the desire to add another dynamic attacking option up top to support the likes of Jozy Altidore and Alejandro Pozuelo.
BM: Finding another attacking talent to supplement Jozy and Pozuelo can make us even better. Adding an attacker that can score 10, 12, 14 goals will only make us better. pic.twitter.com/oaoYOJj6Ml— Toronto FC (@TorontoFC) November 13, 2019
It’s not very often we see a player as talented as Bradley devote his career to playing in Toronto (regardless of sport), let alone leave money on the table to do so. Cherish moments like this Toronto fans. The Reds are set up to be a force for the next few years, and it’s thanks to a true leader in our captain, Michael Bradley.