On Thursday Brek Shea completed his loan move away from Premier League side Stoke City.
The U.S. international winger has joined Birmingham City on a three-month loan deal as Shea will once again spend time in England’s second-tier this season.
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After struggling to break into Mark Hughes’ plans at the Britannia Stadium, Shea will get some valuable playing time at St Andrew’s. At least, that’s the plan.
Shea, 24, has only made five appearances, total, for Stoke after moving from FC Dallas in January 2013. Some of that was due to an injury he suffered early in his Potters career but for the most part he’s found himself on the outside looking in. Earlier this year he spent time on loan at Barnsley in the Championship but that ended abruptly when Shea and other Tykes players were involved in an argument with fans.
Speaking to Birmingham’s website, Blues boss Lee Clark revealed his admiration for the American attacker and that he tried to sign him permanently this summer.
“I’ve been chasing Brek for a while and actually wanted to sign him permanently at the start of the season,” Clark said. “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 is in line to make his Birmingham debut on Saturday against Leeds United at St Andrew’s, as he looks to kick-start his career in England. It sounds like he has landed at a club where the manager rates him and will give him the minutes he needs, plus he will join fellow Americans Will Packwood and Jonathan Spector. That’s good news for Shea, and the U.S. national team.