David Beckham’s Inter Miami complete free transfer of Ryan Shawcross as former Stoke centre back links up with head coach Phil Neville in America
- Ryan Shawcross joins Inter Miami after more than 450 appearances for Stoke
- The 33-year-old had his contract with the Potters cancelled by mutual consent
- David Beckham’s franchise finished 10th in the Eastern Conference in 2020
- The club signed Gonzalo Higuain and Blaise Matuidi after Juventus let them go
- Phil Neville was appointed last month and is excited to work with Shawcross
Inter Miami have signed Ryan Shawcross after the centre back spent more than 13 years at Stoke.
The 33-year-old, who amassed 453 appearances for the Potters and scored 25 goals, saw his contract at the Championship club cancelled by mutual consent on Friday after a succession of injuries had limited him to just eight matches in all competitions since the start of last season.
Rumours of interest from the David Beckham-owned franchise managed by Phil Neville had started to swirl earlier this month, so it was no surprise when Shawcross was snapped up on Saturday.
Ryan Shawcross has joined Inter Miami after 453 appearances and more than 13 years at Stoke
The team owned by David Beckham finished 10th in the Eastern Conference in the MLS in 2020
After the deal was wrapped up, Shawcross said: ‘It’s really exciting. It’s a great opportunity. I’ve read loads about Inter Miami and seen loads of videos from last year.
‘I’m really excited to be part of the team and looking forward to helping out. I had seen the press about it when the Club first started, and you see the owners and the vision they have, and you can’t help but want to be involved with it.
‘It’s a fantastic set-up…the facilities are something to be really excited about, and then you hear about the fans and how enthusiastic and passionate they are.
‘There’s so many things going for the Club and for such a young club, a new club to have all these things going for it, it’s just a fantastic opportunity for me. I can’t wait to get started and hopefully contribute in a good way.
‘I’ve done a few preseasons in North America and I’ve always liked going to different locations. I’ve been to Columbus, Dallas, all these different places and the facilities have always been brilliant.
‘I’ve always expected it to have a bit of a boom, especially with David Beckham a while ago, and it seems to be getting bigger and bigger.
Phil Neville is the franchise’s new boss after stepping down as England Women’s head coach
‘It’s something I wanted to be part of. Obviously Inter Miami has made some big signings with Higuaín, Matuidi and some really good players.
‘And obviously the new manager coming in Phil Neville, with all his experience it’s another great acquisition for the Club – it’s a club going places.’
Neville said: ‘With Ryan, having known him for a long time since he was a youth team player at Manchester United and then following his career at Stoke, I know that he fits into what we want to do at Inter Miami.
Gonzalo Higuain joined the team in September after his Juventus contract was terminated
Blaise Matuidi signed the previous month after a three-year spell with the Serie A champions
‘He’s a good leader on and off the field, he sets the example for others to follow in terms of his professionalism.
‘He’s someone that I think will be a brilliant asset to the Club over the next couple of seasons.’
Shawcross played against Neville four times when Stoke and Everton clashed in the Premier League and will also join forces with a former team-mate at the Britannia Stadium, Brek Shea.
The Manchester United trainee was given a send-off by Stoke during their home game against Luton, with a mural of Shawcross adorning the concourse.
Shawcross was a guest of the club for Stoke’s 3-0 home win over Luton in the Championship
A mural commemorating the 33-year-old’s distinguished service is currently in the concourse
Inter Miami took part in their debut MLS campaign in 2020, which was truncated due to Covid-19.
After finishing 10th in the 14-team Eastern Conference, former Uruguay international Diego Alonso was replaced by Neville last month, with the former Manchester United midfielder resigning from his position as England Women’s head coach in the process.
The club recruited experienced France midfielder Blaise Matuidi and former Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain last year and will hope to add more names to their squad ahead of their opening MLS weekend of 2021 on April 17.
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