Previous
Georgia
Scotland
4:00 PM UTC
Game Details
Germany
Poland
6:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Greece
Finland
6:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Portugal
France
6:45 PM UTC
Game Details
United States
Peru
11:00 PM UTC
Game Details
Mexico
Trinidad and Tobago
2:00 AM UTC Sep 5, 2015
Game Details
Next

Van der Vaart targets Europa League

Hamburg skipper Rafael van der Vaart has set his sights on the twin goals of qualifiyng for the Europa League and playing in his third World Cup for Netherlands.

Van der Vaart, 30, returned from his summer holidays slightly overweight - something that made headlines in both Hamburg and the Netherlands.

He told Hamburger Abendblatt: "I had a difficult year, and it was important to clear my mind during the holidays. But what are two or three kilos anyway?"

Now Van der Vaart is aiming for a successful season and wants to go one better than last time around when they finished seventh - a place shy of the Europa League spots.

"The goal is the Europa League," he told Bild. "Personally, I want to be important to the team. Looking back on last season, I believe I had a good year. I was satisfied, but I scored too few goals."

The midfielder believes an improvement on that will increase his chances of playing in the World Cup, explaining: "[Luis] van Gaal is an honest coach. Everybody has the same chance under him.

"If I play a good year, I have a good chance of being part of the World Cup squad. It would be a dream to take part in it once more."

Van der Vaart will be joined at Hamburg by Arsenal defender Johan Djourou, who signed a one-year loan deal earlier this month. "He is a good player with a lot of experience - and that despite him being only 26," he said. "He is very strong technically."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.