Crouch: Rafa is different class
The 2009/10 campaign proved to be a productive one for Spurs, as they snatched fourth spot in the Premier League and a coveted place in the UEFA Champions League. Qualification for Europe's premier club competition has given the club added weight in the transfer market, with the deadline day capture of Holland international Van der Vaart proving how big a draw the north London outfit now are. The former Ajax and Real Madrid man is still finding his feet in his new surroundings, following a whirlwind switch to England, but has already given an early indication of the quality he possesses. He caught the eye during Spurs' Champions League bow against Werder Bremen on Tuesday and Crouch, who nodded home a pinpoint cross from Van der Vaart to put Tottenham two up on the night, feels the latest arrival at White Hart Lane could be the final piece in Harry Redknapp's jigsaw. "Rafael is different class, especially the way he plays off the front man, finds little pockets and just picks up the ball," said Crouch. "He goes quite deep and is a fantastic player, although I'd say he's more similar to Luka Modric than Wayne Rooney when he plays in that position. He picks up possession and creates things from nothing. "I think the fact that he's chosen to come to us shows our ambition. He's come from Real Madrid; he must have had options but he's come in and he's a good lad to have round the place as well. He's settled in right away. "It means with Luka as well we have two real playmakers. Him and Modric are special players who can unlock defences." Crouch feels that the arrival of Van der Vaart has helped to bolster an already talented Tottenham squad. He believes the club now have the strength in depth to compete both at home and abroad, with the quality of their bench in midweek underlining just how far they have come. He said: "We have the ability to compete against anyone. I look around our dressing room and we have fantastic players. "Our bench for the game in Bremen was as strong as any in Europe - and I genuinely believe we can match most teams in England and Europe. "We've got so much quality. Look at the injuries we had - Michael Dawson, Jermain Defoe, Luka Modric, David Bentley - yet we still put out a fantastic side in Germany. We have absolutely nothing to fear."