Spence: One of the Easiest Decisions I've Ever Had to Make
Monday, 26th Jun 2017 16:57
Jordan Spence’s two-year deal to extend his Town stay may not rank as one of the close season’s high-profile transfer stories – but in the defender’s eyes he has definitely sealed his dream move.
Without a club last summer following his release by MK Dons when they were relegated from the Championship, the versatile 27-year-old Londoner signed at Portman Road in January on a short-term contract and when the club’s least successful league campaign in 58 years came to an end he once again faced an uncertain future.
But within a few weeks he received the news he wanted to hear – that Town boss Mick McCarthy had been sufficiently impressed in his 17 league outings during the second half of the season to offer him a two-year contract to extend his stay in Suffolk.
Spence said: “It’s good to be back, see all the boys, get running around and get going again.
“It was one of the easiest decisions I’ve had to make because I enjoyed my time here last season. The manager was keen to have me back and I was pretty keen to stay, so that made the process pretty easy.
“I hope that what the manager saw from me in training, as well as in the matches I played, helped to make his decision easier.
“Like I said, I enjoyed my time and wanted to stay so I’m happy that everything has been sorted and I’m back where I wanted to be all along.”
Spence is keen to have the stability that has often been lacking in his career until now, his time at first club West Ham punctuated with loan spells at Leyton Orient, Scunthorpe, Bristol City (twice), Sheffield Wednesday and MK Dons (twice) before being released by the Hammers and returning to MK Dons for a third time on a two-year deal.
However, when that ended he was unable to secure further full-time employment in football, trials with Town, Rotherham and Birmingham City coming to nothing and leaving him to kick his heels until McCarthy came calling again early in 2017.
Spence added: “I was a free agent last summer and I spent a lot of my time at the University of East London keeping myself in shape. I will always be grateful to them for helping to look after me.
“I’ve been moving about quite a lot in my career. I’ve only had brief spells of what you would call stability and I’ve got into the mindset that I’d rather focus on short-term targets and not get too far ahead of myself. I want to grow this thing and push it as far as I can.
“Getting the six-month contract here last season was stability for me after what I faced last close season and for the first few months of the season.
“Given the frustration of the place I found myself in before I arrived here in January, I then found myself at a very good football club with a great bunch of lads and a really excellent staff.
“From that very first day I have been trying to be the best that I can be and to help the team be the best that it can be.”
Meanwhile, Spence and his actress wife Naomi Scott – the Pink Ranger in the Power Rangers movie released earlier this year – are looking forward to being able to see more of Suffolk now that his future has been resolved.
He explained: “When we landed here in January it was just a quick turnaround, so we moved closer by moving out of east London to Colchester. That was mostly on the advice of Freddie Sears, which was probably not particularly bright of us.
“But we’re making plans to spend more time on this side of things. I’m one of those players who like to spend a lot of time at the training ground and live as close as I can so we’ll certainly be seeing a lot more of the area than we have done so far.”
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