Rowdies’ Brown sets sights on Joe Cole partnership

Tampa's marquee signing learning with former England international

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Deshorn Brown is looking forward to forming a formidable partnership with Joe Cole for the Tampa Bay Rowdies, ahead of the 2017 United Soccer League (USL) season.

The 26-year-old has been the Rowdies marquee signing so far in pre-season training and comes with strong pedigree having previously played in Major League Soccer (MLS) with Colorado Rapids (2013-2015) and international football with Jamaica’s “Reggae Boyz”.

His addition to the forward line, alongside veteran Bulgarian Georgi Hristov, gives the coach Stuart Campbell’s lead unit great ammunition to push for a playoff spot, after finishing seventh overall in the 2016 North American Soccer League (NASL).

“Without going into too much details about the behind the scenes, as I said a few days ago when I officially signed – I’m delighted to be at the Rowdies,” said Brown, after practice last Thursday.

“Just focused on gelling well with the team, getting accustomed to tactics and perfecting my shooting accuracy in pre-season.”

Brown ,in his first interview with the Tampa Bay Rowdies media on March 8, noted a combination of his agent’s connection and the possibility of being closer to his family in the area, highly influenced his decision to join the club.

In the last year, Rowdies have been showing their ambition to the take the franchise to the next level.

Brown’s signing follows the high-profile inking of England and Chelsea legend Joe Cole in 2016 and former VFL Wolfsborg and German left-back Marcel Schaefer in the last fortnight.

While off the field their “MLS2StPete” project in an effort to join Orlando City as the other Florida based MLS club.

St Petersburg, FLA – Tampa Bay Rowdies Striker Deshorn Brown is seen here at the end of the teams pr-season training session on Thursday afternoon. (Colin Benjamin Photo)

Brown is particularly looking forward to mid-field service of excellent passes from Cole.

“Once I get to know him and get more understanding of his playing style, it should be very good,” said Brown. “In the pre-season game versus Montreal Impact we both had good games. In Jamaica watching the Premier League and Chelsea growing up, Joe Cole was well known.

“He is very creative with his passing range and I like mid fielders like that who can feed me ball consistently.

Brown’s short 2016 sojourn with Chinese Super League side Shenzen affected his ability to play international football. But Brown noted once his form and fitness are right, he is happy to put on a Reggae Boyz jersey, which he hasn’t worn since September of 2015.

“I have been having rough patch with them (Jamaica). Had to unfortunately reject recent call ups for World Cup qualifiers due to the complications of playing far away in China.

“But no doubt I will go for sure to the Boyz once the team deems my services needed once I’m in good health and doing well here at the Rowdies.”