"Ibee was one of the most talented players to come through the U.S. Under-17 and 20 teams," said Thomas Rongen, the current youth academy director at Toronto, who was coach of the Under -20 U.S. national team at the time.
"But [he] was not able to make the step to the highest level. [Ibee] signed as one of the youngest players in the history of MLS, only Freddy Adu was younger. Technically very sound ... but [he] was not able to adapt to the professional game at the highest level."
The next big thing?
What went wrong?
"I'll be honest, I didn't have any injury when I was at Toronto and I'm not someone to blame other people for things in the past," explained Ibee.
"I was doing good but as time goes, growing up with so many coaches -- Toronto FC has had eight coaches in five years -- it effected my playing time.
"When a new coach came in I'd get a rhythm, they'd get fired and then a new one came in. All of a sudden you have to rebuild trust. It kind of kept happening."
After Toronto Ibee tried to get his big break in Europe, but that did not work out either.
"I was here and there in Austria and Denmark. I didn't find a place where I really fitted in. It didn't go the way I wanted. But this is life. You have to live with it and learn."
Then came the call from Ethiopia.
"The weather was very difficult especially coming from the cold and suddenly I'm in high altitude," he said of his arrival in Adidis Ababa, whichat 2,355 meters above sea level is the fifth highest capital city in the world.
"It was tough in the first week. But I've got used to it. It was time to play for my country, the country I was born in."
Ibee is not the only American soccer player that has made the move to a different national team.
During qualification for the 2014 World Cup, national teams from Haiti, Palestine and Afghanistan, among others, have scoured U.S. soccer's talent network looking for second and third generation immigrants to bolster their teams.
"There are a growing number of Americans playing for other national teams but it's almost a second choice," said Brian Sciaretta, a New York Times blogger, who runs Yanks Abroad, a website detailing the foreign adventures of American soccer players.
He has seen a huge number of players coming through the U.S. system before turning up in the most unlikely of places from Ethiopia to Tajikistan. As many as 400 play in Europe alone.
"There's so many different ethnically diverse people in the States. Soccer is new but we've always been athletic people. We have state-of-the-art fitness and dieting. It's quite attractive to foreign coaches," he said.
"If soccer can make it work in this country it could have revolutionary effect on global football."
Now Ibee has the chance to put his career back on track. Currently a free agent, a good Africa Cup of Nations could secure him a contract back in the U.S. or even in Europe.
First there is the task of negotiating a tough group containing reigning champions Zambia, former champions Nigeria and Burkina Faso.
"Technically they are very, very talented," Ibee said of his teammates.
Although he cannot speak Amharic, he communicates with Bisaw in English. "They have a different style of playing. They can shock anybody. No one thought Zambia would win the Africa Cup of Nations last year but they shocked everybody."
True life did not quite work out as expected for Fuad Ibrahim. But sometimes that is not necessarily a bad thing.