Well, where to begin? Spector was initially brought into the club to help add bodies for our UEFA Cup journey, so I guess we should have just got him in on a very short term loan deal then? Seriously though, Spector came from Manchester United for a sum of £500k – for a player who had been at the Manchester club for 8 years and was only 20 when we got him in, it seemed like another brilliant Pardew deal. Especially as Spector was able to play across the whole back four.
However, in true West Ham way – and sticking to the ‘injury curse’ – Spector only made less than 20 appearances in only two of his five seasons at the club, and less than 10 in only one of them. This epitomises why he got so much stick in my mind, as he was only brought in as back-up initially but he was thrown in at the deep end somewhat. Spector was used as a scapegoat for most of his time at the club, like many others before him.
Although, it was strangely enough under Avram Grant that we saw the best of the American; even more surprising was that he flourished in midfield. It was his performances in midfield which left the fans split on him being released in 2011, although, he only ever scored 1 goal in the Premier League. His performances in the Premier League won’t be what he’s remembered for though…I will love Jonny ‘USA’ Spector forever for that game….
His Best Moments:
Well, this is pretty darn easy; His absolutely brilliant performance against his old club Manchester United in the Snowy-wonderland that was Upton Park during the League Cup QF. The first goal was absolutely superb, I’ve heard Van Persie learnt said he dedicated his diving header in the World Cup to Spector, as he taught him that technique…just a rumour mind.
His effort. He may not have been the best player, or the most blessed with speed, tackling, passing, shooting or…er, pretty much anything – but he somehow put in a fair few brilliant performances down to his sheer work ethic and running off the ball into spaces.
He made 115 appearances for the club, in a time when we had players dropping like flies with injuries, that’s a feat in itself.
His Worst Moments:
Consistently seeing the back of his opposing winger’s shirt.
Being a right-footed LB. It just doesn’t sit well with me at this level of football.
Having what he thought was his first goal against Derby deemed as an OG.