Poom in 2007
|Full name||Mart Poom|
|Date of birth||3 February 1972|
|Place of birth||Tallinn, Estonia|
|Height||1.95 m (6 ft 5 in)|
|1995–1997||→ Flora (loan)||19||(0)|
|2002–2003||→ Sunderland (loan)||0||(0)|
|2005–2006||→ Arsenal (loan)||0||(0)|
|2009–||Estonia (goalkeeping coach)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Mart Poom (/ /; Estonian pronunciation: [ˈmɑrt ˈpoːm]; born 3 February 1972) is an Estonian football coach and former professional player. He is currently the goalkeeping coach of the Estonia national football team.
Poom played as a goalkeeper for Lõvid, Sport Tallinn, KuPS, Flora, Wil, Portsmouth, Derby County, Sunderland, Arsenal, and Watford. Poom made his international debut on 3 June 1992 in Estonia's first official match since restoration of independence, a 1–1 draw against Slovenia in a friendly. He made a total of 120 appearances for Estonia and was the team's captain. Poom won the Estonian Footballer of the Year award a record six times, in 1993, 1994, 1997, 1998, 2000 and 2003. In November 2003, Poom was named Estonia's Golden Player. He ended his career on 10 June 2009, after a 0–0 draw against Portugal.
Poom was born in Tallinn and grew up in Mustamäe. He graduated from the Tallinn Secondary School No. 49 with a gold medal and enrolled at the Tallinn University of Technology, but didn't finish his studies, focusing on football.
In 1995, Poom joined his former club Flora on loan, where he broke the club record by keeping a clean sheet for 756 minutes.
On 26 March 1997, Poom joined Derby County for a reported transfer fee of £595,000. He made his debut in the Premier League on 5 April 1997, against Manchester United in Derby's 3–2 away win at Old Trafford. Poom soon became a fan favourite, with supporters often confusing unfamiliar commentators with a low chant of 'Pooooom' before games, which sounded like booing. Poom was named Derby County's Player of the Year in the 1999–2000 season.
On 18 November 2002, following Derby County's relegation to the First Division in the 2001–02 season, Poom joined Sunderland on loan. The move was made permanent on 10 January 2003, for a fee of £3.19 million. On 20 September 2003, he headed a 90th-minute equaliser for Sunderland against Derby County at Pride Park. This was described as "the best goal ever scored by a goalkeeper in the 90th minute on his first match against his former club" by the commentator. The goal was cheered by both sets of fans. Poom's career in Sunderland was beset by several injuries, and he was forced to spend much of the 2004–05 season on the sidelines, making 11 league appearances as Sunderland won the 2004–05 Football League Championship.
On 31 August 2005, Poom was signed by Arsenal on loan as temporary cover for Jens Lehmann and Manuel Almunia. The move was made permanent on 23 January 2006. He was Arsenal's third-choice keeper, and did not play a single match in the 2005–06 season. However, he became the first Estonian to receive a Champions League runners-up medal after Arsenal lost to Barcelona in the 2006 UEFA Champions League Final. Poom did not play nor did he make the substitutes' bench for the final, but was in Arsenal's 25-man European squad, each of whom won a silver medal.
He made his debut for Arsenal on 8 November 2006 in a League Cup match against Everton, replacing the injured Manuel Almunia at half-time. Arsenal won the match 1–0 from an Emmanuel Adebayor goal. His first and only appearance for Arsenal in the Premier League, came on the last day of the 2006–07 season, against his former club, Portsmouth, in a 0–0 draw.
On 26 May 2007, Poom signed for Watford, who had recently been relegated from the Premier League, for an undisclosed fee. He started the new season as Watford's first choice, but went on to lose his place to Richard Lee.
Poom returned to the side for the start of the 2008–09 season, but sustained a dislocated shoulder in a game against Reading on 20 September 2008 that ruled him out for the majority of the season. Although he returned to training before the end of the season, he was not considered for the first-team squad and he was released from his contract, which due to end in June, on 30 April 2009.
Poom made his international debut for the Estonia national team on 3 June 1992, in a historic 1–1 friendly draw against Slovenia. The match was Estonia's first official match since restoration of independence and Slovenia's first match ever. In November 2003, the Estonian Football Association named Poom Estonia's greatest player of the last 50 years. Poom ended his international career on 10 June 2009, after a 0–0 friendly draw against Portugal in Tallinn. He made 120 appearances, keeping a clean sheet in 31 matches.
On 5 December 2014, Poom released his autobiography, Minu lugu (English: My Story).
|Sport Tallinn||1989||Soviet Second League||33||0||—||—||33||0|
|Derby County||1996–97||Premier League||4||0||0||0||0||0||—||0||0||4||0|
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