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17/09/2012 - 03:36 BST

Rafael van der Vaart Cautions Long Road Ahead for Hamburg

Monday, 17th September, 2012

Rafael van der Vaart believes that Hamburg have a long road to travel to reach the level of play they desire.

The Dutch midfielder was in action for Hamburg against Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga yesterday, his first game for the club since returning for a second spell from Tottenham Hotspur.

Van der Vaart played just behind the striker, but was unable to help Thorsten Fink’s side avoid going down to a 3-2 defeat, with Hamburg suffering the blow of a man sent off just before half time.

And Van der Vaart has cautioned that it will take time for his new club’s form to pick up. He also took the time to comment "I’m not Messi" to quell the expectation which has accompanied his arrival.

"We still have a long way to go", said the former Real Madrid man post-match.

"After 20 minutes we were already 2-0 down. Then it went a bit better, but it was a shame we had only ten men in the second half, after that red card given to Petr Jiracek."

The result sees Hamburg second bottom of the Bundesliga after three games.

Van der Vaart’s side have lost all of their league games so far and will hope for an improvement soon.


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