Arlington Heights native Jonathan Spector retires from pro soccer

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Costa Rica's Joel Campbell, left, and Jonathan Spector of the U.S. compete for the ball during an international soccer friendly match in 2015 in Harrison, N.J.

    Costa Rica's Joel Campbell, left, and Jonathan Spector of the U.S. compete for the ball during an international soccer friendly match in 2015 in Harrison, N.J. Associated Press

  • West Ham United's manager Gianfranco Zola, left, celebrates an English Premier League win with Jonathan Spector in 2010.

    West Ham United's manager Gianfranco Zola, left, celebrates an English Premier League win with Jonathan Spector in 2010. Associated Press

  • Jonathan Spector of Arlington Heights in 2003 when the former St. Viator High School player announced he would be playing for Manchester United's reserve team in England.

    Jonathan Spector of Arlington Heights in 2003 when the former St. Viator High School player announced he would be playing for Manchester United's reserve team in England. Daily Herald File Photo

 
 
Updated 8/12/2019 6:02 PM

Arlington Heights native Jonathan Spector announced his retirement from professional soccer Sunday, ending a career that began with great fanfare when he signed with famed English side Manchester United at age 17.

Spector, a defender, announced his retirement at age 33 on Instagram, saying: "After 16 years I have decided to retire from professional soccer. It's been an incredible journey that has taken me all over the world. Thank you to the clubs and people that believed in me along the way and to all of my teammates, especially those that made me look good. Most importantly, thank you to my family who has been there for me throughout it all. Finally, I'd like to thank the fans that supported me, and those that didn't, you made playing this beautiful game that much more exciting!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The St. Viator High School graduate most recently signed in March with Scottish club Hibernian after a stint with Orlando City in Major League Soccer. He played just once for Hibernian.

He earned 36 caps with the U.S. national team, though injuries often derailed his attempts to play for the United States.

Spector played in England with Manchester United, Charlton, West Ham and Birmingham.

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