PHILADELPHIA UNION boss John Hackworth believes that Brek Shea boasts all of the qualities and attributes needed to light up the Barclays Premier League with Stoke City this season.
The United States international has been in fine form for his native this summer, shining for them in their successful CONCACAF Gold Cup campaign which they ultimately won on Sunday courtesy of Shea’s second goal of the tournament.
Hackworth, who has worked with the Texas born winger at Under 17 level as well as compatriots Geoff Cameron and Maurice Edu at senior level, gave a glowing reference to the former FC Dallas star when speaking at Monday’s pre-match press conference.
“I worked with Brek at Under 17 level for the national team, and I worked with him there for about two years there,” the Florida born coach said.
“It was great to see him score the game winning goal against Panama yesterday in the Gold Cup Final. I hope he makes it here for the game on Tuesday because I am really excited to see him again.
“He is a huge talent and there is absolutely no doubt about that, and at his best there are few better than him, and I genuinely mean that.
“He has incredibly soft feet, he is very skilful and he has an awful lot of pace which some people don’t give him a lot of credit for.
“When he gets going down the left wing then he is very, very hard to stop, and as he proved again yesterday he has a knack of getting forward and scoring very important goals.”
Hackworth added: “He has shown the United States how good a player he is, and I am really hoping that he can do the same for the Stoke supporters because if he can then he will be a very, very exciting player to go and watch.”
Shea linked up with his teammates in Philadelphia on Monday afternoon, and is expected to feature in some capacity against the Union at PPL Park on Tuesday night (7:30pm local time).