Michel Vorm reckons the time has arrived for him to cut loose from Tottenham ’s WhatsApp group — and focus on his new life as a barbershop owner.
The Dutchman, who spent six years in north London after joining Spurs from Swansea, tried to leave the group in July when his contract expired but Harry Kane and Dele Alli were among a number of senior stars who begged their old social secretary to stay on.
He agreed to then, but after announcing his retirement last week he will now take his leave to let his old pals move on without him.
Vorm said: “As I was no longer a squad member, I suggested I would quit the group WhatsApp, but the boys wanted me to stay in it.
“I have been away from the club for months now and when Joe Hart joined, I said to the boys, ‘Now it really is time to leave the group, lads’.
“But they all responded, ‘No, please stay, Mich’, and I had to laugh — it is lovely to be appreciated like that.
“Normally the team manager would bomb a player who is leaving out of the WhatsApp group immediately, but they didn’t want me to leave, although I do think it is time to go now and leave the group.
“I don’t think it is right, it does not feel good for me anymore to be involved.”
Vorm has been a hugely popular figure at each of his clubs and his phone has gone crazy with well wishers in the past few days.
He added: “I have had a lot of very warm messages in the past week. The words in those messages really touch me.
“It gives me the idea that I have been able to help guys, that I have meant something for them.
“That is how I want to be. I prefer to be remembered for those qualities.’’
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Vorm would regularly have team-mates over to his house for bonding nights.
He said: “Those are my most beautiful memories.
“I would organise a poker tournament or a barbecue.
“Another time, I would do a complete set-up in the basement of my house and we would be gaming all night.
“Everyone was welcome and most of the lads would come.
“The heart of the squad was a wonderful and tight bunch of players.”
Vorm was due to leave Tottenham in 2019 agreed to stay on in a phonecall from chairman Daniel Levy after Hugo Lloris was injured.
He said: “They don’t call you if you are an average goalkeeper. I felt honoured that the club wanted me back so quickly.
“In the end it proved a very special year. I had the joy to be there for the opening game of the new stadium, we went all the way to the Champions League final.
“I was lucky to work with not only Mauricio Pochettino, but also Jose Mourinho, and if I go back a bit more, I have seen Harry Kane and Dele Alli turn into top-class players.
“But, most important, is that I have made friends for life at Tottenham.
“The Covid pandemic has speeded up my decision to retire.
“I did not enjoy the world of football anymore.
“The atmosphere has gone. There is hardly any social contact and that is something I find important.
“At the end of last season, we were playing in empty stadiums and were constantly tested for Covid-19.
“For years I ran the breakfast club with Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld, Moussa Dembele and Christian Eriksen.
“Before we went training, we would all enjoy a good breakfast and sit down and talk.
“Even that is not possible anymore.”
Vorm lives on a farm and has started his own barbershop in his hometown, Utrecht, which he calls his ‘man cave’.
He said: “It is funny, I can’t cut hair myself yet, but my dad has been a barber all his life.
“He used to have his own shop and he was also a goalkeeper as well.”