The well-traveled 23-year-old American attacking midfielder has fallen out of favor with the Philadelphia Union and he appears set for a transfer to Brazilian Serie A club Bahia, according to multiple reports in both the USA and Brazil. Kleberson, Bahia's 33-year-old midfielder and a Brazil international, would reportedly join the Union as part of the transaction.
The Union confirmed that the move was in the works Wednesday, with manager John Hackworth telling the club's official website, "That deal is not done right now. There are still some hurdles that have to be stepped over in order for that to happen. The reality is that we think it’s a good situation for both Freddy and the Union and it could potentially bring us a very high profile player from Brazil.”
Brazilian outlet Sambafoot reported Thursday that Adu, the one-time can't-miss prodigy, has arrived in the country to take a physical ahead of the completion of the move. He reportedly told gathered media at the airport upon his arrival that, "I want to get to know the city and the people, as well as to help Bahia. I always imagined playing a competition in Brazil in order to have a playing style similar to the Brazilians. They always inspired me. I will enjoy playing in Brazil. It will be fantastic to represent Bahia."
Adu's club career has been a whirlwind one, with his initial MLS stint with D.C. United and Real Salt Lake giving way to a move to Benfica. Adu was perpetually loaned from the Portuguese side to French club Monaco, Portuguese club Belenenses, Greek side Aris and Turkish second-division squad Caykur Rizespor.
He was called back into the U.S. national team by then-coach Bob Bradley for the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup and showed well, prompting his return to MLS with the Union. Adu had seven goals and two assists in 35 games (26 starts) with Philadelphia, but a contract dispute in the offseason led to him falling out of the club's plans for 2013.