Harry Redknapp is hoping Tottenham had beaten the transfer deadline to complete an £8million swoop for Real Madrid midfielder Rafael van der Vaart.

Spurs boss Redknapp revealed he was alerted to the Holland star's availability just two hours before the window closed at 6pm but, two hours later, the clubs had still not confirmed if the deal had been done. Redknapp claimed 27-year-old Van der Vaart had been set to join Bayern Munich for £18million but the move broke down.

He said on Sky Sports News: "It's still dragging on. We have been trying to do something but we are waiting to see if it has all gone through and we are hoping it has. It's something to do with clearance."

"I think he was going to Bayern Munich on Monday for £18million and suddenly he became much cheaper.

"They let me know around 4pm that he was available for £8million and, for that money, he is a top player who will definitely improve us.

"The fee has come crashing down because the deadline is so close.

"He's a great passer of the ball, he's a top footballer, he will join in here and be a big plus for us."

Van der Vaart helped Holland reach this summer's World Cup final but has struggled to establish himself at Real since signing from Hamburg two years ago.

Redknapp also revealed he had made an approach for Liverpool winger Ryan Babel, saying: "He was a player we made an enquiry about but it never came close."

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