Portland Timbers’ Spencer buoyed by Valencia learning curve

John Spencer was not too perturbed by his Portland Timbers side losing 1-0 to Valencia on Wednesday night.

The Timbers hosted the Spanish Primera Division outfit in a friendly and although they were beaten, Spencer was thrilled for his players, and the rest of the club, to gain some much-needed experience against a top quality line-up.

“It’s a tremendous learning experience for myself and the staff, and also the players,” Spencer said.

“Everybody always thinks, from afar, that you can go coach in Europe, you can go and play in Europe. It’s a different level completely.

“We got a real good introduction to European possession football – movement off the ball, movement from wide areas into inside channels to receive the ball. I think it shows when you don’t communicate and you ball watch, you can get picked off at the highest level and there was certainly some quality football played by [Valencia] in the first half.”

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