John Spencer has been announced as the head coach of MLS expansion franchise Portland Timbers.

The former Houston Dynamo assistant will take over from current boss Gavin Wilkinson for the 2011 MLS, with Wilkinson remaining as general manager and technical director.

Spencer is a former Chelsea and Rangers forward who also played with Queens Park Rangers, Everton, Motherwell and Colorado Rapids.

Spencer was assistant at Houston from 2006 up until July this year, helping guide the club to two MLS Championships under Dom Kinnear in 2006 and 2007.