Cartilage Free Captain Awards: Young Player of the Season

Ian Walton

The second day of awards voting brings us to the youngsters in the Tottenham Hotspur squad.

Tottenham Hotspur have done a pretty good job in recent years of developing young talent, but this season seemed to be an aberration. Not too many youngsters played a big role in the Spurs squad this season. In fact there were only six players that played for Spurs that would even qualify for the award (one of which is Gareth Bale). As a result, we're going to include some of Tottenham's on loan players in the voting for this award. Let's look at some possible nominees.

Aside from Gareth Bale, the next most obvious choice is Kyle Walker. The right back played a ton for Tottenham Hotspur and was consistently good. Sure, he had a couple lapse, particularly at the beginning of the season, but as the season progressed he became more and more comfortable in Andre Villas-Boas' system. His attacking runs were often the only width the squad had and his ability to get back and cover defensively after those runs saved Spurs on a couple of occasions.

Steven Caulker didn't play nearly as much as many fans would have liked, due largely to the re-emergence of Michael Dawson, but the 21 year-old still looked extremely assured whenever he played. He made 28 appearances for Spurs this year, including seventeen starts in the league. He even chipped in with two goals. Caulker may very well be the best young defender at Spurs right now, but it seemed like he was often outshone by his counterparts in defense.

Gylfi Sigurdsson played primarily as a substitute, making 21 league substitute appearances against 12 league starts. He managed 6 goals in all competitions and some of them were very big and important goals. The Icelandic midfielder didn't have quite the season that many expected, but he did make an impact at some vital times.

From the category of players on loan, the two standouts are Andros Townsend and Danny Rose. Rose was consistently the best player on a rather poor Sunderland squad. He probably was one of the three or four best left backs in the Premier League based on his performances. He played in 27 matches for the Black Cats and averaged just over 2 tackles and 2 interceptions per game. Townsend, meanwhile, consistently beat out pricier players for playing time while at QPR. In twelve matches at Lofthus Road Townsend managed two goals and an assist while constantly being one of the best players on the pitch.

Unfortunately, Tom Carroll isn't an option in this voting. It makes me sad, but he just didn't play enough to even be considered. So, who gets your vote?

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