Rafael van der Vaart

Gareth Bale

Tottenham’s Christian Eriksen Fills Gaping Void Left by Rafael van der Vaart

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Tottenham Hotspur pulled off an inspirational win this weekend, coming from two goals down to send Southampton home scratching their heads. The win keeps them in fourth, which is quite an achievement when one considers the club's goal difference. But don't let the table fool you; Spurs are in turmoil and not just with regards to management.

Palace - Spurs Preview: 8-Point Wishlist For Spurs This Season

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What ho, and welcome to 2013/14. With our season now literally minutes away this seems as appropriate a juncture as any to push away the second helping of kippers, retire to the favoured reading chair, stuff a pipe and consider the (by no means exhaustive) AANP Towers Eight-Points Wishlist for the new season.

Spurs 1-0 Sunderland: Dash It All

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A rummy thing, football. Up diddly up, down diddly down, whoops poop twiddly dee, to quote one particularly sagacious soul – after which Man Utd win the whole dashed thing and our lot get edged out by that other lot. And that, it appears, is how football works. But when 38 games end with us essentially taking pride of place at the head of a 16-strong cohort of no-man's-land stragglers, I am rather inclined to think ‘Dash it all, what's the point?

West Brom 0-1 Spurs: Man-Love For Holtby

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Has the good ship Hotspur ever enjoyed such a serene voyage? From the moment that angry lad spat and walked this eased into an absolute stroll – one-way traffic throughout the second half, and even though the lead was but one goal there was none of the usual frenzied panic that accompanies the final five minutes.

Praise pours in for Gareth Bale

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Gareth Bale's immense value to Spurs has been underlined in the last seven days by two vital goals. While it may be unfair to say that the Welshman has single-handedly earned four points from our trips to Norwich and West Brom, he seemed the player most likely to find the net in two close games.

Of course, many would argue that Rafael van der Vaart had the same ability to sneak the most important of goals but while we've coped to an extent without VDV, losing Bale would be a far bigger obstacle to overcome.

Maribor 1-1 Spurs: The Half-Hearted Amble to Glory Continueth

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Still not really clicking, which is just about grumpily bearable against the European champions, but a darned sight more irritating against Slovenia's finest. The lack of cutting edge in attack had me thumping my head repeatedly against the nearest wall from around midway through the first half. Injury to Adebayor was a shame, for this game had ‘Two-Man Attack' scrawled across it in the sort of chunky font normally reserved for unintelligible graffiti.

Wednesday Gossip

Offbeat: Rafael van der Vaart’s Former Wife Admits ”Psychological Torture”, Dani Alves The Tourist & Kagawa’s Birthday

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Welcome to Offbeat Wednesday, your weekly gossip special! This week, read about Dani Alves' date at Parc Guell, Sylvie van der Vaart's 'psychological torture' and Shinji Kagawa's hilarious birthday!

Rafael van der Vaart's ex-wife, Sylvie Meis, has spoken up about how her husband's new relationship with her former best friend, Sabia Boulahrouz, has 'terrorized' her.

Offbeat: Ronaldo and Irina Enjoy Bernabeu Date, Rooneys’ Christmas, Drama In Van der Vaart Divorce, Alonso Welcomes Third Child

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This week in Offbeat Wednesday (your weekly gossip special!), Ronaldo and Irina hit up the Bernabeu, The Rooney boys pose with Father Christmas, Sylvie van der Vaart admits to infidelity, Xabi Alonso welcomes a new child and Sara Carbonero's baby bump takes over the social network!

Sepp Blatter's best friend, Cristiano Ronaldo, was spotted at the Bernabeu VIP stands over this weekend with girlfriend, Irina Shayk.

Gossip: Bartender Rips On Ashley Cole, Sara Carbonero On Pregnant Life, Ronaldo Baby Rumours, Sylvie van der Vaart

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In this week's installment of Fab Footy Gossip, Chelsea's Ashley Cole gets told off by an American bartender for under-tipping, Sara Carbonero embraces her pregnancy, Sylvie van der Vaart enjoys the summer, Ronaldo fuels rumours that his girlfriend is pregnant and Milan Pique makes another adorable appearance.

Offbeat : Leo Messi Caught With Vegas Stripper, Van der Vaart Moves In With Ex-Wife’s Friend & Neymar Mania

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This week, Rafael van der Vaart moves in with his ex-wife's former best friend (for obvious reasons), Messi is caught red handed with a Vegas stripper (!), Iker Casillas and Sara's baby gender is confirmed and Neymar is swarmed by a group of girls at the Barcelona airport.

Love him or hate him, boys, there's no denying that you'd love to spend a day in his shoes.

OFFBEAT: The Drama Of Sylvie & Rafael Van der Vaart, The Rooneys At Beyonce & Irina Shayk’s Gift From Ronaldo

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Welcome to Los Chicas Chismes, your weekly footie gossip special! This week, The Rooneys attend a Beyoncé concert, Real Madrid's 86-year-old legend, Alfredo di Stefano, marries his 36-year-old secretary, Sylvie and Rafael van der Vaart's relationship drama hits insane proportions and Irina Shayk gets her model booker a gift from Cristiano Ronaldo!

GG : Van der Vaarts To Reconcile After Divorce Announcement, Balotelli Dates Belgian Model & Mesut Ozil’s Popstar Link

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It's time for your weekly, fabulous dose of Futbol Gossip! This week, the Van der Vaarts decide to reconcile after a brief separation, Mario Balotelli flies in his new Belgian girlfriend to Manchester and Real Madrid's Mesut Ozil is seeing a German popstar!

When the Van der Vaarts' announced that they were separating earlier this month, we shed a tear or two for the couple.

Van der Vaart ‘Mania’ Strikes Hamburg, Mario Balotelli’s Smoking Therapy – Plus Carol Celico, Alex Gerrard

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Welcome to Offbeat Wednesday! This week, read about Van der Vaart Mania in Hamburg Mario Balotelli's 'Hypnosis' Therapy, Caroline Celico's funky editorial and Alex Gerrard's thoughts on the hilarious David Beckham- Katherine Jenkin affair rumour.


The Van der Vaarts have made their descent into Hamburg and what better way for the city to celebrate it than with a life-sized cardboard version of both Sylvie and Rafael?

Bundesliga

Bundesliga Round Up: Week 22 – ÇalhanoÄŸlu’s Wondergoal

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"It was the best goal of my career" said Hakan Çalhanoğlu after his 40 yard free kick made a fool of Borussia Dortmund's goalkeeper, Roman Weidenfeller and sealed a 3-0 win that even a week ago would have seemed fanciful.

Çalhanoğlu is only 20 years old so he has many years to try to score a better goal.

Top 5 Bundesliga Goals From Matchday 9

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This week's Top 5 Bundesliga goals feature the likes of Bayern Munich, Hamburg, and more. Bayern Munich had to fight back from a goal down to secure all three points and two of their goals made it into the top five. Newly promoted Hertha Berlin make the list with an excellent header flicked on by Adrian Ramos.

Top 5 Goals of Bundesliga Matchday 8: Former Tottenham Star Scores Fantastic Volley

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The Bundesliga is in full flow and the league is really starting to shape up after 8 weeks of action. Usual suspects Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund are at the top of the table in first and second respectively, with Leverkusen level on points with Dortmund and in third simply because of goal differential.

Rafael van der Vaart Scores Incredible Scissor Kick Goal For Hamburg [VIDEO]

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Rafael van der Vaart scored an incredible scissor kick goal today for Hamburger SV against Nurnberg in the Bundesliga.

The former Tottenham Hotspur attacking midfielder scored the goal in Hamburg's 5-0 away win.

Here's the goal from a couple of different angles:

Rafael van der Vaart Scores Incredible Scissor Kick Goal For Hamburg [VIDEO] is a post from World Soccer Talk.

10 Players to Watch in the 2013-14 Bundesliga Season

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The 2013-14 Bundesliga season has already kicked off, and there are 10 months of intrigue ahead of us.

Here are 10 players to watch in the 2013/14 Bundesliga season:

1. Thiago Alcantara

Having been signed by Bayern Munich for £21.6million, Thiago Alcantara will have to prove that he belongs among the greats.

Hamburg Away Shirt for 2013-14 Season [PHOTOS]

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Hamburg have unveiled their away shirt for the 2013-14 season.

Designed by adidas, the beautifully designed navy blue shirt with sky blue trim is a clean looking design that features the classic iconic Hamburger SV club crest. While I'd prefer to see Rafael van der Vaart wearing a Premier League club jersey, the Dutch attacking midfielder seems at home in his Hamburg away shirt.

Top Two Performers for Hamburg SV This Season

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Rafael van der Vaart of Hamburg-Photo via bundesliga.com

Despite a season that has left Hamburg SV smack dab in the middle of the pack in Bundesliga, 9th out of 18 teams, there have been a couple of very bright spots for the team and their supporters to look forward when their team takes the field.

Hamburg Shocks Dortmund While Bayern Wins Again

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Borussia Dortmund suffered a shock 4-1 defeat at home to Hamburg in the Bundesliga on Saturday with South Korea's Son Heung Min claiming two goals as both teams finished with ten men.

Robert Lewandowski put Dortmund ahead in the first half only to be sent off a quarter of an hour later as Hamburg roared back with two goals each from Son and Latvia's Artjoms Rudnevs.

Hamburger SV

Rafael van der Vaart hat Angst vor den eigenen Fans

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Wir Spieler hatten Angst vor unseren Fans.

Rafael van der Vaart, Mittelfeldspieler des Hamburger SV, hat nach der "Aussprache" zwischen Fans und Mannschaft, bei der es zu Rangeleien, Angriffen und Beschädigungen einiger Autos der Spieler gekommen ist, Angst vor den eigenen Fans.

van der Vaart ist nur ehrlich

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Ich habe Theater gemacht, aber nicht geschauspielert, weil ich gemerkt habe, dass der Schiri nur Gelb zücken wollte. Ich wollte ihn davon überzeugen und aufmerksam machen, dass das ein rotwürdiges Foul an Per gewesen ist.

Rafael van der Vaart, Mittelfeldspieler des Hamburger SV, über sein theatralisches Hinfallen beim Gerangel nach dem rotwürdigen Foul von Dortmunds Robert Lewandowski.

Hamburg

Offbeat : Ex-Wife Of Hamburg’s Van der Vaart Says Infertility After Her Cancer Treatments Led To Separation

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Hamburg striker's Rafael van der Vaart's divorce from his ex-wife, Sylvie has now been made official with the Dutch TV presenter regaining her maiden name and calling herself Sylvie Meis.

As part of the settlement, Van der Vaart, 30 paid her five million euros, plus alimony and joint custody of their son Damian (7 years old).

Noticias : Rafael van der Vaart Staying “Focussed” Despite Divorce News

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After the shocking announcement of Rafael van der Vaart's divorce from his wife of eight years on Tuesday (after hitting Sylvie at a NYE party), six camera crews and 25 reporters eagerly awaited the Dutch striker's arrival in Abu Dhabi last night.

Naturally, everybody was expecting to see him in tears, but men are not allowed luxury of showing their emotions (!

German Bundesliga – Match Recaps – 26 September 2012

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Bayer Leverkusen, Hannover 96, Werder Bremen, and Hoffenheim all won while Hamburg held Monchengladbach in the German Bundesliga on September 26, 2012.

Borussia Monchengladbach 2-2 Hamburg

Monchengladbach rallied on two different occasions to get their first home draw of the season. Hamburg took leads of 0-1 and 1-2 on goals from Rafael Van der Vaart and Artjoms Rudnevs.

Tottenham Hotspur

Spurs boss Andre Villas Boss: ‘I expect great things from Christian Eriksen’

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Andre Villas Boas says it is time to move on from Gareth Bale and start expecting to see brilliance from Christian Eriksen instead. The Tottenham manager made it clear that he sees Eriksen as someone who can develop into a player who is equally important to the club as the recently departed Welshman.

Video: Benoit Assou Ekotto says he’s never heard of new Tottenham signing Paulinho

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Spurs left-back Benoit Assou Ekotto is well known for having absolutely no interest in football except for the 90 minutes he's playing. He has emphasised that point even further by revealing that he has never heard of his new £17m team-mate, Brazil international Paulinho. The boy from Brazil shouldn't feel too hard done by though: [.

Jan Vertonghen reveals why he rejected Arsenal

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Tottenham defender says he rejected Arsenal by AM

Jan Vertonghen has revealed that he snubbed Arsenal's interest in him to sign for their rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

The defender was being chased by many European clubs last summer, but Arsenal and Tottenham were the main competitors.

Spurs complete double signing to round off a busy transfer window

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Tottenham rounded off transfer deadline day with a double signing of goalkeeper Hugo Lloris and forward Clint Dempsey.

Andre Villas-Boas started his managerial post at Tottenham FC eager to sign a goalkeeper, a striker and a replacement to Luka Modric who left White Hart Lane to join Real Madrid.

Germany

Fabmino

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That's what they're calling the otherwise yet-unnamed goal that Fabian Johnson helped to create with Firmino to put Hoffenheim ahead of Hamburg in the fifth minute. Rafael Van der Vaart equalized just before halftime but Hoffenheim has added two more since to make it 3-1. Clip to come ... - Jacob Klinger

Bastian Schweinsteiger and Edin Dzeko shine in UEFA World Cup Qualifying

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Officially halfway through our UEFA qualification run, the 2014 World Cup stage is beginning to take shape with its eventual participants all edging closer to securing their Brazilian berths.

However, for nations both big and small, such a feat is nigh impossible without a touch of star quality, a lot of which is on show during international weekends such as the one just passed.

Champions League

Ajax toppled by Americans: Johan Cruyff, Where You At?

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Showtime!

MIC Cup Semi-final
vs Ajax

L'estartit Another prime time showdown against one of the top youth academies in world football.

The Netherlands have produced countless world class players with Ajax being the conveyer belt. Johan Cruyff, Edwin van der Sar, Dennis Bergkamp, Patrick Kluivert, Marco Van Basten, Rafael van der Vaart, Wesley Sneijder, and Nigel de Jong to name a few.

Mario Götze juggles chewing gum during Champions League training session

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Before Borussia Dortmund steamrollered Ajax 4-1 on Wednesday night to ensure a place in the final 16 of the Champions League, Mario Götze pulled off some showboating of the highest order during a training session at the unnecessarily capitalized Amsterdam ArenA.

The midfielder skilfully juggled his chewing gum and - unconcerned by its contact with his boots that have been on the dirty ground — flicked it back into his own mouth.

Clint Dempsey

Lilywhite Grumblings Post-Norwich & Pre-Wigan

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The table continues to suggest that life is actually tickety-boo, but the brow furroweth with fresh earnestness around these parts, because hanging on for a narrow victory/draw, in games that ought to have been stopped after an hour for sheer cruelty to the opposition, now sits alongside inane twitterings and naughty-business-with-good-looking-but-vacuous-reality-TV-models on the list of favoured past-times of our heroes, with Maribor, Southampton and now Norwich providing recent evidence of this dubious trend.

Transfer round up

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After a summer of rumour, gossip and the occasional piece of news, it's back to business on the pitch and trying to think of what else to write about between now and December.

After the last kick of 2011-12, we have now seen Corluka, Kranjcar, Pienaar, Modric and Bassong leave the club while Gio Dos Santos and Rafael van der Vaart left on permanent deals on deadline day.

The Rest

Wir stehen auf!

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Wir stehen auf!

Wir stehen auf für eine Welt ohne Rassismus! Laut gegen Nazis, Interkutureller Rat, Make A Noise und Bundesliga-Stiftung präsentieren den Aktionsspot für die Internationale Wochen gegen Rassismus. Es heißt jetzt wieder ein Zeichen setzen und das geht besten, wenn alle an einem Strang ziehen.

Newcastle Reported After Top Dutch Playmaker

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There is a report in CaughtOffside that Newcastle are interested in 30 year-old Dutch International play-maker Rafael van der Vaart, but there's noway Newcastle will be bringing in a 30 year-old well as long as Newcastle are owned by Mike Ashley. Rafael van der Vaart - turns 31 next week With Newcastle having failed [.

Portugal vs Netherlands: Preview and Projected Lineups

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As the European leagues slowly return after a summer break, so will big matchups among national teams from the Old Continent. And a much-anticipated battle will be between FIFA's fifth and seventh place teams. Portugal and the Netherlands will clash today at 3:25 pm ET in Faro at the Estádio Do Algarve.

Holtby signs but where does he fit in?

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It had always seemed likely that Tottenham's pursuit of Lewis Holtby would see AVB get his man and the news was finally confirmed on the club website yesterday afternoon.

"We are delighted to announce that we have reached agreement with Schalke for the immediate transfer of Lewis Holtby," the statement reads.