Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Rafael van der Vaart has urged his erstwhile club to rope in out-of-favor Chelsea star Hakim Ziyech.
Ziyech, 29, has failed to nail down a first-team place at the Blues since arriving from Ajax for a fee of around £33 million in 2020. However, he has helped the west London outfit lift a total of three trophies so far.
A left-footed technical operator renowned for his set-pieces, the 50-cap Morocco international was heavily linked with a temporary switch to Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in the final days of January. Despite reports claiming that he had reached a personal agreement with the Parisians, the deal failed to materialize as the Blues allegedly sent through the wrong papers.
The timeline of Hakim Ziyech’s failed Deadline Day transfer to PSG ⚽⤵️ pic.twitter.com/cQTZZlyxLQ
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) February 1, 2023
Speaking on Ladbrokes: Fanzone, Van der Vaart shared his thoughts on Spurs’ ongoing problems, pinpointing the midfield. He elaborated:
“There’s a few missing links for me. I’ve always said that they’re missing a classic number 10. The midfield, with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur – when he is fit – is solid – but they’re missing a player who can pick up the ball between the lines, make space, turn, run at defenders and feed [Heung-min] Son and Harry Kane.”
Shedding light on Harry Kane’s current role, Van der Vaart added:
“Harry has to play that role himself right now; dropping deep to get the ball, feed it out, then try to get into the box to get onto the end of things. It’s too much for him. He’s a striker, he has to stay on the shoulder of defenders and score goals… that’s his natural game.”
Urging Spurs to lure Ziyech away from Chelsea, Van der Vaart said:
“They’re certainly missing something in that number 10 area, and I think the answer is Hakim Ziyech. He’s currently not happy at Chelsea, and I’m a big fan of his. If Tottenham were to bring him in, their problems are solved. I really don’t think they need much more.”
🇲🇦 Hakim Ziyech showing his class!#UCL pic.twitter.com/gBWHi6HFUn
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) December 14, 2022
Is Hakim Ziyech likely to depart Chelsea?
Despite starting 27 out of his 44 appearances for Chelsea last term, Hakim Ziyech has recently fallen out of favor at his club. He has started just seven games this season, featuring in just 692 minutes of action.
Furthermore, with the arrivals of Joao Felix, Raheem Sterling, Mykhailo Mudryk, and Noni Madueke, the former Ajax winger will likely struggle to get minutes this campaign.
Chelsea are expected to offload a number of players in the upcoming summer with Ziyech at the top of the unwanted list. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Marc Cucurella and Kalidou Koulibaly could also leave.