Kaka’s emphatic one-goal, two-assist performance in his return from injury against the Portland Timbers in a 4-1 win for Orlando City stole all of the headlines, but Brek Shea had an impressive showing as well.
The US international was one of the players who benefited from the Brazilian’s silky passes, and the lanky left back took full advantage on one play, blasting a powerful left-footed rocket to the right top corner of goal to give the Lions a 2-0 advantage in the 32nd minute.
After scoring, Shea continued his tradition of celebrating with his hand covering his face – pointer finger and thumb in the shape of and L and the rest of his hand over his mouth – something he started over a year ago. But what, exactly, is the significance of his post-goal routine?
As with other aspects of Shea’s career, it comes down to art. He is an avid art connoisseur and painter and even owns an art studio, called Left Foot Studios. According to NBCSports.com's Kyle Bonn, the 26-year-old Shea's inspiration comes from a fellow artist, Alec Monopoly.
While Monopoly is now a famous due to his graffiti works, at the beginning of his career much of his work was illegal. To take credit for the work, he would take pictures near his art, covering his face in the same way that Shea does now.
Shea revealed that the celebration has personal meaning for him as he uses it to signal his overcoming the struggles that he had in England, where he played at Premier League side Stoke City for two seasons.
“When I do it on the field it has a personal meaning for my career and my comeback after struggling in England. That’s what it stands for to me,” Shea said according to NBCSports.com.
As it turns out, Monopoly is a big fan.
“I was really humbled to see a member of the American team doing one of my moves,” the graffiti artist said.