Roma has been a consistent contender since, finishing second in the league six times and winning the Coppa Italia in ’07 and ’08. Last year the club was taken over by a consortium led by Boston businessman Thomas DiBenedetto, making it the first Italian team owned by an American. DiBenedetto, who also holds a stake in the group that owns the Boston Red Sox, has said from the start that he wanted a U.S. player at Roma. In Bradley, he has an American who is emerging as a world-class talent.
Deployed as a defensive midfielder, Bradley earned rave reviews for his performances in Verona as he helped the Flying Donkeys to a respectable 10th-place finish in ‘11-12.
Meanwhile, he proved his worth to Klinsmann, overcoming the coach’s initial skepticism with brilliant outings against Slovenia last November and in February’s 1-0 win over Italy in Genoa.
That game, in addition to his consistent quality with Chievo, helped make Bradley a hot commodity in Italy. Clubs like Inter Milan, Napoli and Palermo reportedly were interested in him, and Chievo Sporting Director Giovanni Sartori said in June that was being “followed by half of Europe.”