words // Adam Arthur
Meet Michael Bradley, Team USA’s do-it-all midfielder and Eastbay cover athlete. The Princeton, New Jersey native took a break from his intense training to talk to us about Team USA, Brazil 2014, and the new Nike Magista cleat.
Having turned pro at age 16 and being part of U.S. National Team for the past 9 years, Michael brings valuable experience and leadership to the team’s midfield – and he’s only 26 years old. He’s looking to help lead Team USA to success this summer in Brazil and beyond.
“Representing your country is the greatest honor an athlete can have. The opportunity to represent the United States of America and all the fans as a nation, to wear the colors, and know that you’re representing so many people, you can’t describe it. In your career, you may play for a lot of different teams and coaches and in different places but there will always be something unique about stepping on the field and representing your country.”
Michael has played on the biggest stages, including Italy’s Serie A and England’s Premier League and at the 2010 tournament in South Africa. With experience playing at the highest level, the USA’s #4 knows how great of a challenge the team faces this summer, but is confident they can be successful.
“The group speaks for itself. There are four really good teams and you could talk all day about Germany, Portugal, and Ghana and how strong they are and how difficult these games will be. But, the reality is, none of those teams will be happy to be in our group either. None of those teams will be excited about the idea of playing us. We understand that when you get to a World Cup, to do well requires playing at your absolute highest level. It requires the ability to not only play against good teams, but to beat good teams. For us, the challenge comes right away.”
To prepare to win in Brazil, Michael is focusing on training, helping Toronto win games, and staying at the top of his game.
“At the moment, it’s about training every day with my club team, keeping myself fit, and trying to improve each and every day. When games come around, I’m having as big an impact as possible and having that good run of form leading up to the World Cup.”
At this summer’s tournament, the former AS Roma player will be lacing up Nike’s new Magista cleat, which utilizes Flyknit technology to create a sock-like fitting upper out of a single thread.
“You put the cleat on and it feels like a slipper. The material is as natural as it can be. It molds to your foot right away. I was surprised by how fast I got used to it and how much I like to shoot with it. It’s certainly a new look and something innovative.”
You can control the game and prepare to win like Michael by getting the best and most trusted soccer gear, including Nike Magista cleats, at Eastbay.
To learn more about Michael, go to eastbay.com/MichaelBradley.