Cartilage Free Captain continues its series reviewing the players of Tottenham Hotspur and how they performed in the 2015-16 Premier League season. Today's subject: Dutch goalkeeper Michel Vorm.
Appearances: 7 (1 PL, 6 Cup)
Goals Against: 8
What went right?
In his second year as the primary back-up to Hugo Lloris, Michel Vorm's game-time was cut in half. With just seven appearances over the course of the entire season, Vorm didn't have much time to display his skill in net. He started the first game of the season against Manchester United and those were the first and last minutes of his 2015-16 Premier League season. With appearances in the FA Cup, League Cup, Europa League, and Premier League, he actually played in every competition that Tottenham Hotspur embarked on this past year.
Michel Vorm is an agile goalkeeper, a superb shot stopper, and a penalty specialist; yet it isn't these qualities that make him an asset to the club. By all accounts he is a terrific personality in the locker room and a model professional. Being the oldest player on a young side, there is weight to how he handles himself. Pochettino looks to him as a leader in the team and and their post-match interactions show that he is a valued member of the side. Save his tirade at the end of the "Battle of the Bridge" (a natural reaction) where he had to be restrained by Spurs staff, Michel Vorm had a fine season as back-up goalkeeper to Tottenham Hotspur.
What went wrong?
Hugo Lloris' health didn't do much in the way of giving Vorm an extended time to shine in the 2015-16 season. As a supporter, this is a wonderful thing. Vorm isn't that far removed from his time at Swansea where he racked up massive numbers of saves, but there is no comparison between our French and Dutch international goalkeepers. Lloris is the clear number one and the more games he plays, the better chance Spurs have to win.
What might be disconcerting or unsettling is how little playing time Vorm was granted in secondary competitions. Outside of the Premier League and late stages of cups, one would imagine that Vorm should always get the green light to start. Considering that Spurs didn't really make a late cup run in any competition and Michel still only played in seven matches, this could be viewed as a concern. That said, it is hard to really gauge his play over such a minuscule sample size of games.
Michel Vorm has his fair share of detractors, but I still view him as a solid back-up for Tottenham Hotspur. He certainly can be prone to poor decision making, but he was a solid performer before he joined Spurs and is still in the prime of his career at thirty-two years old. Has he lost a step, confidence, and feel for the game in two seasons with limited playing time at Tottenham Hotspur? Of course — but that was what all parties signed on for when he joined the club. In a pinch, the Dutch international can put in a shift. He is a legitimate professional with some pedigree to match too. He can also kick the shit out of everyone on Chelsea's roster, which is always a positive. Look for more opportunities for Michel Vorm in Spurs dense 2016-17 fixture list.
Rating: 2.5 Chirpys