Brad Davis, a Missouri native and midfielder for the U.S. Men’s National Team is one of the oldest and most experienced members of the men’s national team. In 2011, Davis was a finalist for the MLS MVP Award, after leading the league in assists that year.
Here’s what you need to know about Davis:
1. It’s His First World Cup
This is Davis’ first world cup in his professional career, in spite of that career nearing its end after 12 years, according to the Houston Chronicle.
The Chronicle reports it took some brutal honesty from Davis’ club coach, Houston Dynamo’s Dominic Kinnear, and Brad’s older brother Jeff to push him to become a World Cup caliber player. Brad’s father, Pat, said of Jeff’s wakeup call to Brad:
He told him, ‘You are so much better than the effort you put in. You just cannot take what gifts you have and not do the best you can with it. You’re just too good not to push it.’
After that, Davis began to shed fat and build muscle, which helped him become one of MLS’s star players. He was voted the Houston Dynamo’s Most Valuable Player from 2009 to 2012.
2. He Played for Saint Louis University in College
Davis, who grew up in the St. Louis, Missouri suburb, St. Charles, was a St. Louis Billiken from 2000 until 2002, when he left college soccer to go pro. Before leaving SLU, Davis was named the Conference USA Freshman of the Year and a second team NSCAA All-American as a sophomore. He was selected third overall in the 2002 MLS SuperDraft by MetroStars, now the New York Red Bulls.
3. His Current Club is the Houston Dynamo
Davis has played left winger for the Houston Dynamo since 2006, after being traded to the San Jose Earthquakes in 2005, which moved to Houston after the 2005 season and was renamed the Houston Dynamo. Prior to 2005, Davis played for the Dallas Burn in 2003 and 2004 after being selected as the fourth pick overall in the MLS SuperDraft. Davis spent his first year in professional soccer with the MetroStars, where he was a finalist for the MLS Rookie of the Year Award.
4. He’s Been Playing Internationally Since Childhood
— Brad Davis (@Brad_Davis11) June 12, 2014
According to MLSsoccer.com, Davis was part of the American team at the 2001 U-20 World Championship in Argentina, where he played with current USMNT teammate DaMarcus Beasley and other standouts including Landon Donovan and Oguchi Onyewu. When asked if Davis felt like a rookie since this was his first World Cup, he said:
Not at this point. I’ve had a pretty long career and a pretty good career, and I’m excited to be here … I don’t see myself as a rookie by any means.
5. He’s a Proud Dad
Davis and his wife Heather have two young children: son Kaden, 4, and daughter Taylor, 2.
Davis comes from a military family, and although he never served, he’s used his MLS career as a platform to give back to military families across the country. In 2006, he created “Brad’s Brigade” which works to bring recognition to the men and women who serve as members of the U.S. Armed Forces. Brad’s Brigade works with “Branded Brigade Outdoors” which helps injured and/or disabled veterans and their families live active lives.
Davis shares photos from his personal life and charitable efforts on his Instagram. Here are a few of the photos you need to see: