Jonathan Spector was perhaps Orlando City’s most important acquisition this offseason, with the veteran defender brought in by the Lions to help shore up a defense that conceded the most goals in MLS in 2016.
This week, Spector spoke with ESPN’s Herculez Gomez and Max Bretos about his move to Orlando on the “Max & Herc” podcast, detailing the reasoning behind his decision to move from English Championship club Birmingham City to Florida.
The Chicagoland native was also asked about the reports that the Fire were interested in acquiring him before he signed with Orlando.
“When I was younger, about 14 or 15, I did have the opportunity to train with the Chicago Fire when Bob Bradley was in charge there,” Spector said when asked if he was aware of any interest from Chicago. “I think they were training out in Lake Forest, [Ill.] at the time and, as a matter of fact, C.J. Brown was on the team who now is one of the coaches here in Orlando, so it’s kind of coming full circle for me.
“But once I heard Orlando was interested and had the opportunity to speak to Jason Kreis about coming here, it just seemed like a really good fit. Everything he had to say about the team, my role in the team and also just the excitement in the city surrounding the club was pretty impressive. Selling 18,000 season tickets before the season for the opening game is pretty incredible, and so I’m excited to be part of it and looking forward to playing in Orlando.”
Spector, 30, and Orlando City will open the 2017 season and their new soccer-specific stadium on Sunday, March 5 against New York City FC.