By DAN KARELL
Brek Shea has agreed to move down a division to see some regular playing time.
The U.S. Men’s National Team winger completed an emergency three-month loan to Birmingham City in the League Championship, with the deal running through Dec. 13 with no recall option. According to Birmingham manager Lee Clark, Shea was brought in after a string of injuries to the team’s wingers left him in need of some new recruits.
“I’ve been chasing Brek for a while and actually wanted to sign him permanently at the start of the season,” Clark told bcfc.com. “He impressed me when he played for Barnsley here at St. Andrew’s on New Year’s Day and, given our recent injuries, it made sense to make this loan move, importantly with no recall clause being something that I have stressed all along.”
Shea spent a little more than two months in 2013 at Barnsley in the Championship, looking for playing time that wasn’t available under Mark Hughes at Stoke City. He made eight appearances with the relegation-plagued Barnsley but was sent back to Stoke after making an inappropriate gesture toward his own fans during a match.
The 24-year-old winger has only made three English Premier League appearances since joining Stoke in January 2012, all as a substitute. He earned his 27th cap for the USMNT on Sept. 3, coming off the bench in the 1-0 victory against the Czech Republic.
Luckily for Shea, he won’t be alone as an American in the Birmingham squad. The roster already includes former U.S. Under-20 defender Will Packwood and USMNT pool player Jonathan Spector.
What do you think of this news? Glad to see Shea find a new club? How do you see him fitting into Birmingham City?
Share your thoughts below.