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5 Agustus 2008

Real Madrid confirm move for Van der Vaart

MADRID, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Dutch international midfielder Rafael van der Vaart has agreed a move from SV Hamburg to Real Madrid, the player said on Monday.
"Last night everything came together and I am now moving to Real Madrid," the 25-year-old said on his website (
"I have always wanted to move to Spain because I have a strong bond with that country. Now I'm going to play for Real Madrid it's a dream come true. Tomorrow afternoon I will be presented."
Spanish media have reported he is set to sign a five-year contract for a fee of around 10 million euros.
The former Ajax player, whose mother is Spanish, will be the fifth Dutchman in the Real Madrid squad, joining Ruud van Nistelrooy, Arjen Robben, Royston Drenthe and Wesley Sneijder at the Bernabeu.
Van der Vaart's statement came just hours after his compatriot Sneijder suffered a serious knee injury in Real's 1-0 friendly defeat by Arsenal on Sunday.
Van der Vaart, who joined Hamburg in 2005, has been a long-time target of Real Madrid and was reported to have been signed at the specific request of coach Bernd Schuster.
His move to Real will increase speculation that the club are beginning to lose hope that they will be able to lure Cristiano Ronaldo away from Manchester United.