Transformed Hammer Spector is holding it all together
With Scott Parker and Mark Noble struggling with injuries, United States international Jonathan Spector has stepped up to the plate for West Ham.
WITH recent knocks for Scott Parker and Mark Noble and the long-term injuries of Thomas Hitzlsperger and Jack Collison, West Ham have certainly been struggling to cope in midfield.
But one of the few plus points to emerge has been the transformation of United States international defender Jonathan Spector from a back-up defender, to a very useful dribbling, goalscoring midfield man.
Spector was certainly up against it on Saturday. With Parker missing and Noble limping off he proved to be the sole attacking midfielder, but the 24-year-old felt he gained some important experience from the game.
“I’m still getting used to it and learning the midfield role, but I’m growing more and more into it with each and every game,” admitted Spector.
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“It’s an honour to be playing in there and hopefully I’ll be able to continue there and learn the position more and more.”
From looking at him, it would seem that he is learning from the likes of Parker. He won the ball in midfield when he managed to get near it and he even got in another shot as he looked to add to his three cup goals this term, but he admitted that it was a difficult afternoon.
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“It was a tough game,” he said. “We knew that they were going to have a lot of the ball. They’re very good at keeping it, passing it and moving it around and they made it very difficult for us.”
The emergence of Spector, Freddie Sears and Zavon Hines into the starting line-up have given West Ham a real boost in recent weeks and they have slowly begun to turn round the team’s fortunes, but Arsenal simply proved to be too strong for them on the day.
“It was a disappointing result,” said the United States international. “We wanted to kick on from the results we’ve had here recently. We’ve had some great nights over the last week or so and we would have liked to have pushed on, but it didn’t happen today.”
It didn’t, but perhaps it was to be expected against a team vying for the Premier League title and with no injury problems to talk about.
Next weekend’s game against Everton gives the Hammers a better chance of a positive result and Spector is confident that they can do just that.
“We played them at home recently and it’s a game we felt we should have won, so hopefully we’ll be able to go there and get a win,” said Spector.
“We’ve had some good results and moments where it looked like it was going to turn our season around. Hopefully this game can be the same as last season and be the catalyst we need to push on and climb the table.”
This season has been far from easy, but if we are looking for positives, and surely we must be, then the emergence of Spector as a capable midfielder has got to be one of them.
He may get plenty more chances this season to show exactly how good he can be.