The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP -

BIRM­ING­HAM City loa­nee Brek Shea hopes his grow­ing un­der­stand­ing of the English game will help his Blues ca­reer flour­ish.

The Amer­i­can mid­fielder, who joined from Stoke ear­lier this month, made an in­stant im­pres­sion on Lee Clark, pick­ing up an as­sist in his first game for the club.

Shea joined Stoke from Ma­jor League Soc­cer team FC Dal­las in Jan­uary 2013, but strug­gled to hold down a place in Mark Hughes’ squad at the Bri­tan­nia Sta­dium.

Shea, 24, says it’s taken him time to get to know the game on this side of the At­lantic.

“I would say over here it’s more of a full-time job com­pared to MLS,” he said.“I don’t want to say that’s part­time, what I mean is that MLS is a good league, it is grow­ing ev­ery year.

“But it’s dif­fer­ent be­cause over here foot­ball is the only sport. Ev­ery­thing off the field, on the field, they get mag­ni­fied times ten.

“Over there you don’t re­ally get that big me­dia in­ter­est. All the peo­ple don’t know about soc­cer as they have Amer­i­can foot­ball, bas­ket­ball and base­ball.”

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