Jonathan Spector could sign off for the 2008/09 season this evening when the United States take on Egypt in their final group game at the FIFA Confederations Cup.
The CONCACAF champions have had a tough campaign in South Africa, with defeats by the might of Italy and Brazil but have an outside chance of still making the last four. The US require a three-goal victory against Egypt (kick-off 7.30pm London time), combined with Italy losing by at least three goals to Brazil - alternatively the US and Brazil's combined margin of victory must be seven goals or greater.
Brazil lead Group B with six points, Italy and Egypt are on three each, and the US is in fourth place. Spain and South Africa have already won through to the semi-finals from Group A. Regardless of the disappointment of two defeats, particularly the 3-0 reverse at the hands of a free-flowing Brazil after the harsh 3-1 loss to Italy, there has been much for Spector to take from the finals.
Still only 23, he has re-established himself as his country's right-back and played the full 90 minutes in both games to make it 15 caps in total. Although no US player emerged with credit from the Brazil game, he was still going strong in the final stages and nearly set-up a US consolation with a good surge forward and composed thinking in the penalty area that led to Benny Feilhaber hitting the bar.
Spector has been glad to finish his season with top-level competitive action after the head injury he suffered against Sunderland back in April. That had threatened to rule him out for the campaign but he was able to play a part in the final few fixtures and then head off on international duty. Looking back to the concussion, Spector was well aware of the seriousness.
"Of the actual incident I don't remember much," he said. "I remember most of the game up until five minutes before the incident. I don't remember waking up until I was in the ambulance on the way to hospital, which was disconcerting. I was fortunate to have such great medical staff on hand to look after me was good.
"I didn't like what the paramedics were trying to do. I didn't know what was happening and I started to panic a little bit. I was out for a long time. After injury I had been able to come back and at least be part of what we achieved this year. Then I suffered the concussion and was out again which was disappointing. It has been good to be back now and get some games before the summer."