Barnetta joins Philadelphia Union in MLS

Tranquillo Barnetta is on his way to Philadelphia. (AFP) Source: AFP

Philadelphia Union announced the signing of Switzerland international and free agent Tranquillo Barnetta on Thursday (AEST).

Terms of the deal were not disclosed by Union, but 30 year-old Barnetta has penned a deal using targeted allocation money after his exit from Bundesliga giant Schalke after three years at the club.

Barnetta - veteran of 75 international caps and three FIFA World Cup appearances - is the latest player to swap Europe for the United States, following in the footsteps of Andrea Pirlo, Steven Gerrard, Didier Drogba, David Villa, Frank Lampard, Sebastian Giovinco and Kaka.

"To add a player of Tranquillo's quality will help us tremendously in what we're trying to build," technical director Chris Albright said.

"He's a player with a real pedigree who chose to continue his career here in Philadelphia over other options. His experience and leadership will also be a great addition to our group as we push for the play-offs and make a run at the (U.S.) Open Cup."

Barnetta, who also spent time with Bayer Leverkusen, Hannover and Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga, made 22 appearances for Schalke last season, scoring three goals and tallying five assists.

Source Omnisport