The Philadelphia Union officially announced that they have cut ties with Adu by mutual consent, allowing him to sign with Serie A club Bahia, where he had been widely reported to be signing for the last couple of weeks. Adu arrived in Brazil last week to acclimate himself with the surroundings and take a physical prior to the official completion of the deal.
The Union have taken on 33-year-old Brazil international midfielder Kleberson on loan in conjunction with the move and have signed him as a Designated Player, putting the freedom of Adu's lofty wages to quick use. Terms of the loan were not disclosed.
Adu, 23, scored seven goals and had two assists in 35 games (26 starts) for the Union across the 2011 and 2012 seasons, but he fell out of favor with the club during an offseason contract dispute, spending the last few months orchestrating a move elsewhere.
His next destination is Bahia, a top-flight side that will become his seventh team since leaving MLS for the first time in 2007. Adu transferred from Real Salt Lake to Benfica and was subsequently loaned to Monaco, Belenenses, Aris and Caykur Rizespor before returning to MLS following a resurgence in the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup.
In return, the Union welcome Kleberson, who has been capped 32 times for Brazil and was part of the nation's 2002 World Cup-winning side, starting in the final against Germany. Prior to Bahia, Kleberson had played for Atletico Paranense, Manchester United, Besiktas and Flamengo.
"We’re excited to have a player with his kind of experience join an already talented roster," Union manager John Hackworth said in a team statement. "Kléberson has had success at the world’s highest level of competition – both on a club and international level – and we hope he can add another dimension to our team."