By FRANCO PANIZO
Brek Shea might currently be in the beginning stages of his Stoke City offseason, but that is not stopping him from going to train with a U.S.-based club.
According to a report from the Orlando Sentinel, Shea is set to begin a 10-day training stint with USL Pro’s Orlando City on Thursday. The 24-year-old winger is coming off a season in England in which he made a combined nine appearances for Stoke City and Barnsley, and is apparently keen on keeping his fitness up ahead of the upcoming preseason.
News of the training stint with the MLS-bound Lions should not be completely surprising given that Shea has some connections with the club. His former agent, Paul McDonough, is now Orlando City’s general manager and club president Phil Rawlins recently ended a 14-year stay as a Stoke City director.
The report states that those connections have Orlando City interested in acquiring Shea for their first season in MLS. Shea’s rights in the league do not belong to his former club, FC Dallas, because it lost his MLS rights when it sold him to Stoke back in January 2013.
Shea was hoping to be included in the U.S. Men’s National Team headed for the World Cup in Brazil this summer, but his lack of appearances at the club level seemed to have doomed his chances. He was not included in the 30-man provisional roster that Jurgen Klinsmann announced a couple of weeks ago.
What do you make of Shea training at Orlando City? Surprised to see him training with a club at the start of his offseason? Would you like to the see Lions make an effort to sign him ahead of their MLS debut in 2015?
Share your thoughts below.