Last Wednesday night we all bore witness to one of our very own finding the back of the net for the United States Men's National Team, a joyous and almost surreal experience when remembering City's humble USL Pro roots. Where should Brek Shea line up for Orlando City SC?
Since inking with the Lions on Dec. 19, Brek Shea has been one of the most talked about athletes in Orlando this side of Dwight Howard. From the initial fanfare of the signing to the growing speculation surrounding chemistry and position, all eyes have been on Brek, and for good reason. He immediately legitimizes the roster with his skills on the attack, ability on the ball, and vision to make a play.
Take this gem in the sixth minute of the USMNT friendly against Chile -- a lob from Matt Besler. Shea's speed enables him to get behind the defender on the run, his strength keeps the defender on his back hip rather than allowing him to get back in position, followed up by a beautiful strike on the ball with his first touch. Once Shea gets on his defender's far shoulder, he's simply too strong and too fast to be beat. The keeper never has a chance.
There has been plenty of speculation regarding what role Shea should play for Orlando City. With depth in the midfield and experience in MLS playing at left back for FC Dallas, it seems Shea could slide in at left back and hold his own at the position. He will never be mistaken for a world class defender, but he's certainly capable of fitting in the spot.
The question is, what are we losing on attack?
Shea's left foot is easily one of the most dangerous weapons in Adrian Heath's revamped arsenal. Whether it be directed at net or into the box, when Shea is in the offensive third with the ball in his possession, he is a threat to create a chance on net.
The forgotten man in this winter whirlwind of transactions seems to be long-time stalwart left back Luke Boden, who announced back in October he would be joining the Lions in MLS. The Sheffield Wednesday veteran has been a rock at the position, growing through the organization since 2011.
The prevailing opinion appears to be that we'll see Shea mostly at midfield and Boden in the back, barring situational discrepancies that call for mixing up the lineup. With the regular season just a month away, we haven't much longer to wait.
What do you think? Should Shea play in the attacking midfield to maximize his strengths, or at left back, to allow Heath to play his best starting 11?