Spence keen to stay and help rebuild Hammers
West Ham defender Jordan Spence says he wants to sign a new deal at Upton Park and help resurrect their fortunes.
When Jordan Spence joined West Ham at the age of 15, they were a club stuck in the Championship.
Now, with his 21st birthday coming up next week, the full back could be one of the players to hold the key to the door which takes them back to the Premier League.
The youngster would love that chance, but there is the little matter of his future to sort out – he, like many others, is out of contract in the summer.
“I would like to stay,” said Spence after Sunday’s excruciating 3-2 defeat at the DW Stadium.
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“I have been saying since I started speaking to the club in January, that I want to stay, because this is my football club, this is my team, so hopefully everything can get sorted out.”
With the so-called stars of the team set to head for the Upton Park exit door, it will be players like Spence who will surely provide the future.
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Tony Carr’s successful Academy team has provided the likes of Mark Noble, James Tomkins, Junior Stanislas, Freddie Sears, Jack Collison, Zavon Hines and now Spence in the current first-team squad, and there are likely to be more following that path before West Ham kick off again in August.
“It is the same with any football club going down,” said Spence. “You have to start rebuilding. There are not many who go down and don’t have to make lots of changes in personnel.
“I would love to play for this football club. It was such a proud moment to pull on that shirt against Wigan.
“This is a massive club and I have been here since I was 15 and my target from the moment I joined was to be a regular in the first team.”
With right back Lars Jacobsen another out of contract and likely to leave, Spence would certainly fit that slot.
As he says, there is a rebuilding programme to be done, but Spence stressed what a dark day Sunday was for the club.
“It is a sad day for West Ham and a sad day for me personally, because I have been here since I was 15,” he said.
“When I joined the club they were in the Championship, but I think we are a big club in the Premier League, let alone in the Championship.
“We had magnificent support against Wigan and you have to thank the fans who did travel up and I know they will still be there to support us.”
Other clubs are already sniffing around Spence, looking to prise him away from Upton Park, but for the moment, he is only thinking about the demise of his club and the pride he had when stepping out on to the field on Sunday.
“When the dust settles I can think about things and perhaps consider that it was a good day for me and my family,” he reflected.
“I thank God for the opportunity because this is my football club.”
Maybe this is the big opportunity to move on to the next generation.
How would a squad comprising of the likes of Spence, Dylan Tombides, Jordan Brown, Sebastien Lletget, Cristian Montano and Blair Turgott cope?
Next season, we may well find out.