97% pass accuracy, six interceptions: Does Spurs man deserve criticism?

Vlad Chiriches

Tottenham Hotspur defender Vlad Chiriches came in for criticism following his side's 1-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion.

Following Tottenham Hotspur's 1-0 defeat to West Bromwich Albion, a number of comments posted on my match report suggested Spurs fans were far from happy with the contribution of Vlad Chiriches.

The Romanian international started the match ahead of the likes of Federico Fazio and Jan Vertonghen, much to the confusion of the fans who voiced their feelings after the match; but what do the statistics say about Chiriches' performance?

As you can see from the table below, the 24-year-old had a remarkable 97 per cent pass accuracy.  He also won six interceptions, which was double that of his defensive partner Younes Kaboul.

The new Spurs captain did return the favour when it came to effective clearances, winning 10 to Chiriches' five, but even then the Romanian equalled the total of Eric Dier and more than doubled that of Danny Rose.  

  Passing AccuracyWon TackleEffective ClearanceEffective Head ClearanceDuel WonAerial WonInterception Won
Vlad Chiriches 97% 1 5 3 2 1 6
Danny Rose 82% 3 2 2 6 1 1
Eric Dier 81% 1 5 4 8 5 2
Younes Kaboul 77% 1 10 7 4 3 3

There were key areas in which Chiriches was outperformed but his teammates, and I am not attempting to paint him as the saviour of Tottenham's defence. But when his passing accuracy was 20 per cent higher than that of Kaboul, and he won just as many tackles as two of his three defensive teammates and made at least twice as many interceptions as any of them, perhaps focusing on one player is not the way to go.

Is the partnership of Vertonghen and Fazio considerably better than that seen on Sunday?  Only time will tell.  But Chiriches' showing against West Brom was not exactly the horror show some are painting it out to be, although stats - as we all know - only say so much.

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