RYAN SHAWCROSS has ended his 14-year stint at Stoke City to sign for Phil Neville at David Beckham’s Inter Miami.
The 33-year-old Potters captain was out of contract but has terminated his deal early to head Stateside.
Centre-half Shawcross, who arrived at Stoke from Manchester United in 2007, had made just two Championship appearances from bench this season.
Now he has secured his exit and will arrive in America ready to begin pre-season training at Inter on February 22, as reported by Sun Sport earlier this month.
Stoke confirmed his departure earlier to ‘pursue new playing opportunities in the United States’.
Chief executive Tony Scholes said: “Ryan’s contribution to the club over the last 14 years simply cannot be under-estimated.
“His outstanding leadership and the consistency of his displays made him a talismanic figure for us.
“He has been an outstanding role-model, both on and off the pitch, and the way he applied himself in training and matches epitomised the city of Stoke-on-Trent – hard-working, committed and loyal.
“He feels the time is right to explore new opportunities and leaves with our very best wishes.
“I would like to take this opportunity to wish Ryan, his wife Kath and their family every success for the future – they will always be welcome at the bet365 Stadium.”
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Stoke manager Michael O’Neill added: “It’s very rare these days for a player to stay at one club for 14 years; I’m sure Ryan has had opportunities to go elsewhere down the years but he clearly felt settled and valued here.
“He hasn’t figured as often as he would have liked over the past couple of years but his professionalism and the way he has conducted himself, both on the training ground and around the club, since I joined simply cannot be questioned.
“Ryan has an exciting opportunity ahead of him which I know he’s keen to grasp and I wish him nothing but success for the future.”
Shawcross, who won one England cap, took over the captaincy in 2009 and led Stoke out in the 2011 FA Cup Final.
He had remained a regular in the defence until he suffered a fractured leg in pre-season 2019.
Despite the transfer window in England being closed, American clubs are still able to buy players from Europe.
Neville recently left his role as England Women’s boss to go and work for his former Old Trafford and Class of 92 pal Becks.
And now he is wasting no time in bringing in reinforcements ahead of his first season at the helm.
Inter are preparing for their second MLS campaign – which kicks-off on April 17.
Shawcross is joining superstars like Gonzalo Higuain and Blaise Matuidi as Neville attempts to improve on last season’s disappointing 10th-placed finish in the Eastern Conference.
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