Former Real Madrid and Tottenham midfielder Rafael van der Vaart has joined the Spanish club Real Beltis in the hope of rediscovering his form. At one stage, the Dutchman was seen as the finest playmaker and it led to a move to Tottenham.
After a few years in the Premier League, van der Vaart went on to dominate German football with Hamburg. He was seen as the key figure in the renaissance planned by Hamburg, but it never lasted a far more than a season. Due to severe budget cuts at the German club, van der Vaart did not have a future.
As a result, he has moved toBeltis on a three-year contract. This is likely to be his last major contract with a European team before winding his career at the likes of MLS outfits. The 32-year-old is believed to have taken a pay cut in order to make this deal possible. The sacrificed by the player has been praised by theBeltis president, who is reportedly aware that van der Vaart received several offers evens from his former club Ajax. However, van der Vaart would have been an ageing star at Ajax but now he has the opportunity to achieve something good atBeltis.
“[Betis sporting director] Eduardo Macia told me Betis want to be the fourth best team in Spain; that in a short space of time the club will return to the upper echelons of La Liga. It’s a wonderful project.My roots are also here, so I want to make my contribution [to Betis for that reason too]. I am very happy to come here. It’s a great club and I really want to start. For me it is a dream because my family lives in Chiclana, very close, and I like playing in Spanish football,” said van der Vaart.