The Washington Post

American soccer player Mike Grella scores four goals in England

An American playing in Europe scored four goals Tuesday: Former Duke forward Mike Grella, a Long Island native with his fourth English club since 2009, struck for four in third-tier Brentford’s 6-0 victory over league rival Bournemouth in a Football League Trophy regional quarterfinal.

Grella, 24, scored in the 23rd, 48th, 82nd and 84th minutes. The Football League Trophy, created in 1983, is open to the 48 clubs in League One and League Two. The final is played at Wembley Stadium. Last year American defender Frank Simek was with Carlisle’s championship squad.

After starring at Duke, Grella was drafted by Toronto FC but decided to go overseas. He signed with Leeds in early 2009 and saw first-team action, then went on loan with Carlisle and Swindon Town before landing at Brentford this fall. In seven league appearances (one start), he hadn’t scored.

Several Americans have recorded hat tricks abroad, but has anyone ever scored four?

Steven Goff is The Post’s soccer writer. His beats include D.C. United, MLS and the international game, as well as local college basketball.

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