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A Scouting Report for Tomáš Vaclík
We spoke to journalist Zak Armitage to get a scouting report for the goalkeeper set to replace Djordje Petrovic.
Sources tell The Blazing Musket that the New England Revolution will soon sign Tomáš Vaclík. To get some insight about the 34-year-old goalkeeper, we spoke to journalist Zak Armitage, who saw Vaclík play at Huddersfield Town.
TBM: What are Vaclík‘s strengths?
ZA: First of all, I’m really happy that Tomáš’ has got a new club. I’ve been keeping a close eye on his socials since he left us and I’m glad that he’s been picked up.
During his short time with us, we really got to see just how much Vaclík excels as a shot stopper. He made some key saves in games and kept some vital clean sheets. As a shot stopper, he’s up there with the best we’ve seen at htafc.
TBM: What are Vaclík‘s weaknesses?
ZA: His knees. It may seem like a strange answer but any htafc fan can attest for this. He looked poor on his feet at times, as if he was carrying an injury. When he joined Town he was returning after a long spell on the sidelines, so perhaps it was just a temporary issue. But it’s something that we certainly noticed while he was here and something that I would implore you to keep an eye on.
TBM: Vaclík will be replacing Djordje Petrovic, who has become very well-known for stopping penalties. How does Vaclík do in those situations?
ZA: While with us, Vaclík only come up against a penalty twice, and he was unable to save either. From 50 career penalties, he has saved 8, with the most notable one being a save from a Diego Costa penalty during his time in La Liga.
TBM: It can be hard for players to come in mid-season. Will Vaclík be able to make the adjustment?
ZA: Yes. Yes he can. He arrived with us mid-season and his impact in helping us survive can’t be underestimated. He arrived with us when we were in turmoil quite frankly, as Lee Nicholls, our first choice GK and star player, had just been sidelined with an injury that would keep him out for pretty much the remainder of the season.
We were 22nd when he arrived and pretty much consigned to relegation, but a managerial change a couple of weeks after Vaclík signed helped turn the tide. He took well to the ideas of the new manager and was a key component in the great escape.
Last season was a messy one for us and he seemed to just take everything in his stride. I would say that adaptability is a key strength of Tomáš’ game and I don’t think he’ll have any problems adjusting to a new country and a new league mid-season.
TBM: Vaclík is obviously older than Petrovic. Does he still have a lot to offer? Is his experience a plus?
ZA: His experience is a plus, for sure. We leaned on that experience to help dig us out of a hole last season. As long as he stays fit and motivated I think he’ll be able to offer you a fair amount.
TBM: Is there anything else we should know about Vaclík?
ZA: I think I’ve covered all bases! His time in Huddersfield was short but sweet, but his efforts for us aren’t underestimated by our supporters. Survival for Town was imperative last season, with a new owner coming in over the summer. Vaclík played a key role in that and allowing Town to make a fresh start this season. For that, he’ll always be a welcome guest back in Huddersfield.
We want to thank Zak Armitage for taking the time to speak to us. You can follow his work on Twitter (@SportWriterZak).