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Mid-Day Ticker: Spector a free agent, Libertadores ends scoreless and more


photo by Andrew Katsampes/


Jonathan Spector has spent the last five years with West Ham United, but his time with the club appears to have come to a end.

Spector is officially a free agent after failing to agree to new a deal with West Ham, which will be attempting to gain promotion to the Premiership next season. In his time with the club, Spector played more than 100 league matches and spent time at multiple positions.

The U.S. national team defender has been linked with a move to Germany in the past, and is a safe bet to be a popular free transfer target after one of his better seasons in Europe.

Here are more stories to help you pass some time on your Thursday:

Copa Libertadores final first leg ends scoreless

Teenage sensation Neymar and Santos were held to a 0-0 draw in the first leg of the Copa Libertadores final on Wednesday night. Penarol goalkeeper Sebastian Sosa made several big saves to keep the match played at the Estado Centenario scoreless. The second leg will be played on June 22 in Brazil.

Ballack ends international career

It appears Michael Ballack won't be getting to 100 caps for his country. Germany's national federation said Ballack's international career is over, though it does want him to play in a friendly against Brazil in August. The match would give Ballack his 99th cap, and he would serve as captain for it. Reports say Ballack, who has not been called into the national team since March 2010, will decline the invite.

Eto'o considers England switch

Samuel Eto'o might have three years left on his current contract with Inter Milan, but that hasn't stopped him from considering a move to the Premier League.

Eto'o said he has a month to decide on whether he wants to stay with Inter or make a move to England. Part of the reason the 30-year-old Cameroon international is considering a switch is because he wants to prove he can play well in England, just as he has in Italy and Spain. Eto'o is coming off a strong season with Inter, one that saw him score 21 times and get nine assists in 35 league games. 

World Cup qualifying begins with big win

Belize and Montserrat kicked off World Cup qualifying for Brazil 2014 on Wednesday night, and Belize began its quest to qualify well, winning 5-2. The two CONCACAF teams will meet again on June 19 as they are playing in the regional preliminary round, with the winner being decided off an aggregate score. In total, 832 qualifiers are expected to be played throughout the world.


Where do you think Spector should go? What do you think of Ballack's career with Germany? Pumped that World Cup qualifying has begun?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Spector’s not quick enuf to be a defender in the EPL, but ranging forward he has real potential, and he’s smart and hardworking enough to cover back in the midfield. He should go someplace that will give him a real chance as a holding mid-fielder.

  2. The problem as far as finding a team like QPR and Norwich is that Spector was actually making 1.7 million dollars a year, which comes out to about 20k pounds a week (source: Unless he’s willing to take a pay cut, which I doubt, a lot of the lesser clubs in the Premier League can’t afford to shell out those sort of wages to a player that isn’t going to be a guaranteed starter for them.

  3. Spector will not be coming home anytime soon. You can bet on that. He still has some ‘utility’ years ahead of him.

  4. Oh, I agree, that’s why I thought he should stay at West Ham. I don’t think any team is going to batter down the doors to sign him. He had been at West Ham for five years, and only this year really had begun to appreciate his versatility. Now he has to start over. A team like QPR or Norwich might take him, but I doubt even there he’ll start. He had a relatively good thing going from what it seemed and now he runs the risk of becoming just another Eddie Johnson or Kenny Cooper.

  5. Spector is good enough to be on the roster of many lower PL clubs but he isn’t a definite starting XI player but he would fight to start. Hope he heads to the Bundesliga as he was reported 6months back.

  6. all jimg said was that spector shouldn’t be starting for us, and with lichaj and chandler both (a) better and (b) younger, it isn’t that stupid of an argument. it’s just somehow it got morphed into an argument about whether he should even be on the team.

  7. That is a very valid point. I didn’t realize the proportion of his appearances were that far skewed toward the second half of the season. That being said, though, I still find it hard to believe he will get a spot on a Premier League team or a German team for that matter. It will be interesting to see what happens, though.

  8. i don’t have a problem with the content, just the way its presented. taking someone’s opinion to an extreme in order to show how ridiculous it is, when, in fact, that wasn’t the original argument in the first place. for example, you ended your statement with “his time in the national team is far from over” when no one actually claimed that it was over.

  9. Why? Just because it is logical argument. Despite that its presented in a very satirical way. IMO Spector needs to stay in Europe, I think a new team and a change of position, to central defense or central midfield could benefit him greatly.His form has been way to up an down due to his inconsistency of playing time, and one could argue that is reason for him to return to the MLS to secure consistent minutes. I think however that his when given a chance to play in midfield for West Ham last year he showed enough to intrigue clubs in top European leagues. I think we may see him in Germany, France or maybe for a lower table team like QPR. Also, his time in the national team is far from over.

  10. I would love to see these American players get back to MLS, because I want to see them play and

    watching guys like Spector play at West Ham is all but unwatchable. They scored 43 and gave up 70…and he didn’t play.

    Two, I realize the arguement goes, “playing against the best in the world.” But 17 appearances on a team giving up 70 goals ? My opinion is he is WAY better off playing 34 competitive games.

  11. You have to take into account Spector played half the season as a back and he was not first in the pecking order in that role.

    It wasn’t until West Ham’s Carling Cup match against Man U that it was revealed he was actually fairly solid midfielder that could score goals. If he was in the midfield from the start, he would have been a regular starter.

  12. From what i read and can tell, the allocation rankings are as follows

    Chivas USA

    Philadelphia Union

    Houston Dynamo

    Toronto FC

    Chicago Fire

    Sporting Kansas City

    Seattle Sounders FC

    Columbus Crew

    New York Red Bulls

    Real Salt Lake

    San Jose Earthquakes

    LA Galaxy

    FC Dallas

    Colorado Rapids

    Vancouver Whitecaps (Jay DeMerit)

    Portland Timbers (Kenny Cooper)

    D.C. United (Charlie Davies)

    New England Revolution (Benny Feilhaber)

  13. if all 3 comes to the MLS, it would have to go by allocation rankings.

    Chivas, Philly, and Houston would get the first 3 shots.

  14. I don’t doubt he will get offers. I just think the “popular” part is a stretch. He only made 17 total appearances this past season, so his exposure level was pretty low to those outside of England, and inside England, I can’t see any of the lower-level Premier League clubs chasing him unless they have the funds to pay 10+ thousand pounds a week for a squad player. I just feel like it’s going to be a sort of repeat of the Jay Demerit situation. Of course I could be wrong, but that’s just how I see it progressing. We tend to rate our American players higher than European scouts do.

  15. Well, he was more than a bit player. He played regularly at West Ham, and he’d probably play even more regularly considering the exodus of starters leaving the team due to relegation. I think the relegation could have given Spector a good opportunity to really establish himself at the club, but I guess he’d rather chase dollars and ride pines.

  16. That’s a shame he didn’t come to terms with West Ham.

    He use to be one of the most disliked player there because they thought he was poor until he moved into the midfield role. Once that happened, the fans grew to appreciate him and were looking forward to him staying on with the club.

    He should have stayed at West Ham because he’d see regular playing time.

    For as well as he’s done recently in the midfield role, I don’t know what Prem club would take him and give him regular playing time.

  17. wrong. He’s a versatile, tall, well skilled defender who can get forward and provide service. he’s not the best, and he wont be showing up in any CL games, but he’ll have plenty of offers both in England and abroad

  18. Spector is a young, cheap player who can play multiple postions. He’s perfect with a lower-level EPL side with a thin budget that needs a fill-in starter when injuries hit.

  19. I agree! BANISH HIM FOREVER!

    The US National Team is NO PLACE for a versatile, 25 year old player with 8 years experience in the world’s top league!

    We need more players who play in Norway, or the Turkish second division. Or perhaps those with as many as TEN appearances in MLS.

    This man is a visionary!

  20. Spector “is a safe bet to be a popular free transfer target”? I respectfully disagree. He was a bit player on a relegated club. He will probably get an offer or two (and that too, in a lower league like the Championship), but popular he will not be.

  21. I’m pretty sure he would rather play in his hometown plus I don’t think there is cap room with portlands wasted dp slot and perlaza

  22. Agreed Portland needs Spector more than Chicago. To bad mls has that allocation process that would end up putting him on chivas or Toronto or some bull like that! Get it going garber!!!

  23. Timbers could really use Spector. Not that I have heard anything remotely like that. But as a Timbers fan I can dream.

  24. Spector isn’t the only yank available: There’s also Eddie Johnson and Marcus Hahnemann.

    Spector to the Fire
    Hahnemann to the Sounders
    Johnson to DC United


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