Jonathan Spector is back on international duty again for the United States in Poland tonight after a hectic few days that saw him travel across the Atlantic and back just in time to play his part against Everton last weekend.
The 22-year-old centre-back was needed in Nashville last Thursday to help the United States Under-23 side qualify for the Olympics in Beijing this August, which they did with a 3-0 defeat of Canada. It is a sign of his promise that he has also been named in the 18-man senior party to take on the Poles and the call raises his hopes of featuring at Wembley when the US play England on 28 May.
It has been a busy but rewarding time. After his Olympic exertions in Tennessee, he flew back on Friday to Heathrow, landing late that night before heading straight to join up with his team-mates in Liverpool ahead of Saturday night's game at Goodison Park. "I actually felt really good," he said. "I played Thursday evening, which would have been Friday morning here but I slept the entire flight and when I got in I had no trouble sleeping.
"I got to Liverpool about three in the morning but I slept straight through till about noon. I felt great coming in. I'm used to the travel and did everything I needed to prepare for the game so I felt great going into it. I was looking forward to playing and I was ready to go." As it was Spector was left on the bench to give James Tomkins his debut and the versatile American was impressed with what he saw. "It's always difficult when you make your debut. There are plenty of nerves and things like that but I thought he did really well. The boys around him were really supportive and helped him out."
Spector got his chance to lend his support too when he entered the fray wiith ten minutes to go and was his usual combative self with some timely tackles in front of the back four. With the 1-1 draw secured, he instantly began preparing for the trip to Krakow on Wednesday evening, but was also able to reflect on the achievement of last week. "It was a fantastic experience. To think in four months time I'll be an Olympian is a fantastic feeling, something I'm really proud of and I'm looking forward to representing my country in Beijing for the Olympic Games."