Reports out of the UK state that 35-year-old defender Wayne Thomas, most recently playing for Worcester City in England's Conference North, has cancelled his contract with immediate effect to take up a role as a coach in the New York Red Bulls' academy.
Thomas has played for several clubs over the course of a career dating back to 1995. He started out for Torquay United in what was England's Third Division (now League Two) at the time. He followed that with five seasons at Stoke City, helping the club rise to the second tier of English football, but parting ways with the team before it returned to the top flight.
He remained at the Championship level through stints with Burnley and Southampton (who were relegated during his time at the club). Incidentally, his time with Southampton overlapped with Bradley Wright-Phillips' association with the club.
He has also played for Doncaster Rovers, a couple of Greek Superleague teams (Atromitos and Veria), Luton Town, Rochdale, Tamworth, and, of course, Worcester.
Clearly an experienced professional with a background in the European leagues so many young players aspire to join, he will presumably offer RBNY's academy prospects insight into more than just the technical aspects of the game of soccer.
Thomas is expected to fly to New York "this week". He leaves Worcester after an eventful season: he participated in the team's FA Cup victory over Coventry City (Cup winners in 1987), missed a penalty to end the club's Cup run and an epic shootout (it finished 14-13) against Scunthorpe, and kept a clean sheet deputizing in goal after the team's first-choice 'keeper was injured in the opening minute of a league match.
Welcome to New York, Wayne!