It’s a busy day in the transfer window inside of Major League Soccer, headlined by a three-time World Cup roster member beefing up an Eastern Conference midfield.
Tranquillo Barnetta is set to join Maurice Edu in the Philadelphia Union’s engine room, as the 30-year-old Bundesliga veteran makes his move on a free transfer.
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Barnetta, was on the Swiss roster for the 2006, 2010 and 2014 World Cups, though he did not feature in the most recent edition. On top of his 74 caps and 10 goals for Switzerland, Barnetta spent 2004-2015 in Germany’s top flight. His best offensive season came when he scored 7 goals for Bayer Leverkusen in 2007-08. He more recently was Schalke property, enduring an up-and-down trio of seasons which included a loan to Eintracht Frankfurt.
Orlando City picked up a Swiss player of its own, and added a former Real Madrid youth player as well. The first player is Adrian Winter, a 29-year-old attack-minded midfielder who comes by way of Swiss Super League side FC Luzern. As this video shows, he’s got a rocket for a right foot.
The Lions also added 6-foot-3 center back David Mateos, who spent more than a decade at the disposal of Real Madrid, only playing twice for the First Team. After loans at AEK Athens and Zaragoza, Mateos spent the last two seasons with Ferencvaros in Hungary.
Barnetta is almost a lock to see some degree of success with Philadelphia. Orlando’s signings certainly carry more questions marks. How do the top flights in Switzerland (UEFA coefficient 13) and Hungary (UEFA coefficient 28) rate compared to Major League Soccer?