UPDATE: Deal is done. Freddy Adu is now part of the Benfica club. The fact that he’ll be near and playing with Rui Costa is enough right there. He’s going to learn a great deal and already seems like he’s going to shine, considering all the pressure he’s had in the MLS (media) and his recent U-20 success. He said it was do or die for that tournament for him. He has high goals for himself. That’s what going to take him to the full national team. He’s like one of those early childhood stars on TV, trying to break out of a role. He’s only 18. He’ll also be playing Champions League soccer with Benfica.
The word on the street is that Adu, based more on his performance in the U-20 World Cup, is headed to Europe. This is the best thing for him. He’s shown the ability. He now just needs to gain experience at a high level where he’s under true pressure. I think he’s done wonderfully considering all the pressure that was put on him early on.
He’ll need some time to adjust most likely, but he’s now got enough experience to handle the ups and downs of high level soccer.
Last week, Richard Motzkin told the Scottish Sun he was planning to speak with representatives of Scottish Premier League champions Celtic, which could pave the way for the talented 18-year-old American to move to Glasgow.
However, sources told the Salt Lake Tribune that Benfica is a more likely destination, because of the difficulty Adu would have obtaining a work permit to play for either Celtic or Tottenham Hotspur of the English Premier League.
The report said Adu’s move to the Portuguese club could occur within days.
The league wants $7.5 million for the rights to Adu, according to some reports, a price that might be viewed as too steep for a player who has scored just one goal and collected two assists in 11 games for Real Salt Lake this season.