I first heard the Michael Bradley to Fulham rumor back on Christmas Eve - it was a random article and I can't find it anymore. I brushed it away as nonsense and general silly season banter. Was I wrong to be so quick?
A notable factoid is that Bradley has only compiled 561 minutes thus far in his Roma campaign with 5 starts in 11 appearances. That's partly because he's sustained a couple of injuries and partly because he's not necessarily a vital cog in the club's success. That isn't to undercut his strong performances in those appearances. However, it's been questioned recently whether or not Roma is a good fit for him with a World Cup looming and the need for him to be in top condition going into the tournament.
As an American, I hold Michael Bradley in high esteem. He's often dubbed as the future USMNT Captain due to his leadership and overall demeanor on and off the pitch. It's also not a stretch to name him possibly the best American in football today. While it's easy to associate the honor with both Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan, mostly because of their goal scoring prowess, it's partly because Bradley plays a position that statistically often goes unnoticed and also plays in Italy, a league that is often overlooked in America.
Built with a motor that runs for 90 minute, a keen tackler with the ability to play short successful passes as well as long ones, he's a rounded midfielder who has all aspects of the game in his locker. He makes devastating tackles, controls the pace of the game with possession, and creates with well placed balls to attackers.
His acquisition would be a huge one for Fulham, a club that needs a pair of younger legs in the midfield and would finally fill the void that was left by the departure of Danny Murphy. That's certainly not a knock on Scott Parker, who has done a lot in a short time for the Whites. Bradley would only compliment Parker and his productivity in the midfield giving Fulham a pair of tyrannical match dictators who could help Fulham push up the table.
The possible negatives of this are simply that Bradley is not a true creative force in the midfield and, should Rene Meulensteen desire to continue his triangle experiment, he still needs to add that to the shopping list. Unfortunately, I believe that would push such a purchase to the Summer window due to the nature of the expenditure.
Bradley could be a good bang for the buck transfer value and he'd work brilliantly in the Meulensteen system and be nice insurance if Steve Sidwell wasn't to return to the Cottage next season, as has been rumored.
Again, this all just rumor and conjecture by the media types. That said, there is a bit of logic to it and if Meulensteen does have any sort of a transfer freedom, this could be an excellent buy.