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Van der Vaart compares Harry to Jose

The 28-year-old was only under the guidance of the 'Special One' for a short time before swapping the Spanish capital for White Hart Lane last August, but the Dutch star had seen enough to compare the Portuguese coach with Redknapp.

“I love how Madrid play,” Van der Vaart told Spanish newspaper AS. “They are having a very good season. Mourinho is a coach who the players want to play for.

“Redknapp has a similar technique. They are very good, they know how to engage a group. Players want to win for them.”

Van der Vaart has been in fine form for Spurs this season, playing a key role in the club’s run to the Champions League quarter-finals, where they meet his former club next month.

And the Netherlands star does not regret his decision to leave the Bernabeu, citing his desire to play regular first-team football as the fundamental reason behind his departure.

“In the off-season I had much contact with Mourinho and he is an exceptional coach, the best in the world,” he said.

“But I wanted to play every game and in Madrid there are many exceptional players. I am 28-years-old and to be at a high level I need games.

“Now I am very happy in London with Tottenham. It’s a city I like.”

By Laith Al-Hashimi