Photo credit: @SpursOfficial
The most highly-regarded American international--Clint Dempsey--finally made a move out of mid-table Fulham FC of the Premier League to Tottenham Hotspur of the English Premier League during the closing minutes of transfer deadline in Europe. This after 5 stellar years with the London outfit and scoring 23 goals in all competitions during the 2011-2012 season. And even though his move was deserved, and that he flirted with teams like Liverpool and Arsenal, a more impressive effect has occurred: top European teams are buying American.
It's true that this has happened before with the likes of Jozy Altidore making a move to Villarreal and Onyewu to AC Milan, but the back-top-back transfers of Bradley and Dempsey should have American fans excited. Now comes word that Maurice Edu, a top competitor and long-time player for the ill-fated Glasgow Rangers, is joining forces with Geoff Cameron at Stoke City. A new American Premier League team is born. If you were to start both at center back then you'd have the tandem that came away with a shutout at Estadio Azteca in the US' first ever win over Mexico on Mexican soil. Great selling point, right?
Dempsey and Edu weren't alone today and in the recent weeks. Up-and-coming Terrence Boyd, a player with no professional experience prior to his recent games with the US U-23 and full national team, signed with legendary Austrian team Rapid Vienna and became a starting striker that already has 4 goals in all competitions. Add to this Alejandro Bedoya's move to Helsingborg, Mixx Diskerud's loan to Rosenborg, both whom have scored key goals already, as well as Onyewu to Malaga of the Spanish Primera, and we suddenly see that buying American is getting quite fruitful for teams in Europe.
It remains to be seen, of course, how some of these moves will pan out. Bradley, aside from a recent injury, slid right into a starting role for Roma and has made a difference so far. So has Cameron. If Dempsey can crack the starting 11 for Spurs and if he can score consistently, then American soccer will finally have taking that extra step to become a provider of top talent for the world's most beautiful sport. And World Cup 2014 is right around the corner.