Ryan Shawcross leaves Stoke to pursue move to MLS

STOKE, England (AP) — Stoke terminated the contract of Ryan Shawcross on Friday, allowing the center back to pursue a move to MLS, where he’s been linked with Inter Miami.

The 33-year-old defender made more than 400 appearances for Stoke after arriving from Manchester United in 2007.

The Championship club said his contract was terminated “to allow him to pursue new playing opportunities in the United States.”

Shawcross has been linked with a move to Miami, a club co-owned by David Beckham and coached by Phil Neville.

“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,” Stoke manager Michael O’Neill said.

The Potters were promoted to the Premier League in Shawcross’ first season at the club. He was appointed captain at the start of the 2010-11 season and led the team to the 2011 FA Cup final, where it lost to Manchester City.

Shawcross has seen limited playing time since breaking his leg in a pre-season game against Leicester in July 2019.

“Ryan’s contribution to the club over the last 14 years simply cannot be overstated,” Stoke chief executive Tony Scholes said. “His outstanding leadership and the consistency of his displays made him a talismanic figure for us.”

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