Van der Vaart targets early return

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Tottenham Hotspur playmaker Rafael Van der Vaart is poised to make an early return from injury against Liverpool next weekend.

The Dutchman limped off during the 5-1 defeat to Manchester City just over a fortnight ago, and was expected to be out of action for at least six months with the hamstring problem.

However, a rapid return to action now appears to be on the cards after the 28-year-old revealed the benefits of an intensive training programme and no issues with running or sprints.

"I have been treated intensively by (physiotherapist) Dick van Toorn," Van der Vaart said on his official website.

"I was able to do proper turns again and regular sprints. Next weekend seems like no problem to me!"


Van Toorn confirmed the comments of last summer's deadline day signings, suggesting that Harry Redknapp will be able to pick the player after he proved hospital staff wrong.

"In the hospital they said Rafa would be out for more than a month but he can play in next week's Tottenham match," he said.

"I will leave that decision up to the medical staff of Tottenham. Rafael is a crown jewel for football. I have rarely met a player in all those years who is so dedicated to his job and who wants to work so hard to get back on the pitch."

The attacking midfielder may find it tough to break back into the starting line-up at White Hart Lane anyway, following the side's 2-0 victory against Wolves at the weekend, their first win of the season.

Emmanuel Adebayor and Jermain Defoe scored the goals for Spurs at Molineux, and should Redknapp stick with the pair, Van der Vaart may find his place restricted to the substitutes bench.

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Tottenham Hotspur
Premier League
Rafael Van der Vaart

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