With less than a week remaining before the start of the MLS regular season, two teams got together for a blockbuster.
Orlando City has traded winger Brek Shea to the Vancouver Whitecaps in exchange for forward Giles Barnes, the two teams announced on Saturday. The move comes exactly eight days before the two teams take the field for their first regular season match.
Shea joins the Whitecaps after two seasons in Orlando that saw him shift between winger and wing back. The former FC Dallas star is a two-time MLS All-Star and has made 34 senior appearances for the U.S. Men’s National Team. Last season, Shea started 22 matches, contributing three goals and two assists.
“We are excited to welcome Brek to our club and city,” said Whitecaps FC manager Carl Robinson. “Brek is a tall, physical, skilled player and will bring a different dimension to our attack. Brek will join the group in coming days and we anticipate he will be available for selection as early as this Thursday’s Champions League match against New York.”
Barnes moves to Orlando just several months after being traded to the Whitecaps. The Jamaican forward has scored 33 goals and provided 15 assists in 120 career MLS starts, but the signing of Fredy Montero gave the Whitecaps a new option at the forward position. Orlando City, meanwhile, was in the market for another striker to join a younger crop of forwards headlined by Cyle Larin.
“We’re thrilled to boost our attack with a player like Giles. His versatility to score and create goals will be a valuable asset this season,” added Orlando General Manager Niki Budalic. “I’d like to thank Brek for his exemplary professionalism during his time with our Club.”