Happy Harry hails work of Vaart

02 October 2010 08:59
Harry Redknapp admitted Rafael van der Vaart is looking like a bargain after the midfielder scored twice in Tottenham's win over Aston Villa[LNB] Van der Vaart, who joined Spurs on deadline day for £8million, produced another virtuoso performance to ensure the hosts avoided a European hangover.[LNB]The 27-year-old scored both his side's goals as they came from behind in the latest White Hart Lane thriller.[LNB]"He's started well; he's going well; he's going great," manager Redknapp said after watching Van der Vaart score his fourth goal in his third home appearance for his new club.[LNB]"He's always looking to get on the ball and he's always looking to score. He's got that knack of scoring goals."[LNB]Van der Vaart has instantly made himself a favourite among his new fans.[LNB]Redknapp said: "He's a good footballer and they always like a good footballer."[LNB]After coming to his side's rescue against Wolves two weeks ago and against FC Twente on Wednesday night, Van der Vaart was at it again this afternoon.[LNB]Villa capitalised on another slow post-European start from Redknapp's men when Marc Albrighton gave them the lead with his first professional goal.[LNB]But Van der Vaart headed in a crucial equaliser in the third minute of first-half stoppage-time before rifling home a 75th-minute winner.[LNB]The second goal came after Redknapp switched him the midfielder from the right wing to a more central role at half-time, sacrificing striker Roman Pavyluchenko.[LNB]Redknapp said: "I felt, first half, we were open, too open, with two up and him floating around where he wanted to play.[LNB]"Second half, we changed it and I stuck him in behind one striker."[LNB]Spurs were ripe for the counter-attack in the first half, especially with Tom Huddlestone playing as a makeshift centre-back.[LNB]Redknapp, who had only one recognised defender fit in Sebastien Bassong after Ledley King failed a late fitness test, said: "We're short of central defenders. I had to play Tom back there today and I just felt that we were open all the time.[LNB]"We went for it a little bit, really."[LNB]Villa's defeat was Gerard Houllier's first since taking charge after he claimed victories in his opening two games in the dugout.[LNB]The former Liverpool boss was unhappy with the amount of first-half stoppage-time played by referee Mark Clattenburg, who allowed more than the minimum of two minutes he had indicated, giving Van der Vaart the time to level.[LNB]"I was just not happy with the equaliser because the game had elapsed quite a long time after the two minutes which were indicated," Houllier explained.[LNB]"But that's the referee; the law says it's a minimum of two minutes. He decided it was three minutes."[LNB]The Frenchman also felt the visitors should have been awarded a penalty for a foul on Emile Heskey, who went on to set up the opener.[LNB]The former England striker injured himself laying on Albrighton's 16th-minute goal and was replaced 10 minutes before half-time by John Carew.[LNB]Revealing Heskey merely had a dead leg, Houllier said: "Don't get me wrong, I think John Carew did a good job but, probably, it's not the same player.[LNB]"I've got mixed feelings because, at the same time that I'm proud of their performance, I'm disappointed with the result. A more fair result would have been a draw."[LNB]He added: "The only thing we can blame ourselves for is probably the fact that we didn't take our chances. A couple of times, we could have sealed the game."[LNB]Admitting Spurs are "slightly superior" as a team to his side, Houllier said: "It's a good side, a good team; they finished fourth.[LNB]"On the back of their win against Twente, obviously they have a lot of confidence."[LNB]He added of Van der Vaart, whose two goals were set up by Peter Crouch: "I think he was outstanding but Crouchy was good as well."

Source: Team_Talk