Ron Vlaar: Ex-Aston Villa defender signs for AZ Alkmaar

Former Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar
Ron Vlaar played for the Netherlands at the 2014 World Cup

Former Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar has signed for Dutch side AZ Alkmaar, the club where he started his career, until the end of the season.

Netherlands international Vlaar, 30, had been training with AZ after turning down a new deal with Villa in the summer.

"He gives our squad a huge boost of quality," said AZ Alkmaar sporting director Max Huiberts.

AZ Alkmaar are 10th in the Eredivisie table, 20 points behind leaders Ajax.

Vlaar played a key role as the Netherlands reached the 2014 World Cup semi-final, losing to Argentina on penalties before defeating hosts Brazil 3-0 to win the third place play-off.

"Last year he was a driving force behind the success of Holland at the World Cup," added Huiberts.

Vlaar joined Feyenoord from AZ in 2006 and moved on to Villa six years later.

He made 79 Premier League appearances in three years at Villa.

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