Ron Vlaar will begin training with former club AZ Alkmaar from Tuesday

The former Aston Villa captain is trying to recover from knee surgery.

This summer Aston Villa lost the spine of their team. Striker Christian Benteke made a switch to Liverpool whilst midfielder Fabian Delph eventually decided that he did want an exit from the club, joining Manchester City. Then there was Dutch international Ron Vlaar.

A star for The Netherlands at the World Cup in 2014 he struggled for fitness and form with the club last season and considering his high wages no deal was mashed together to keep the player after his contract expired at the end of last season.

Now Vlaar remains out of contract and without a club after undergoing knee surgery on a long-standing problem this summer.

He is now beginning to recover from the problem and he will have somewhere to train in the future as he picks up his rehabilitation. It has now been confirmed that Vlaar will begin training with his first ever team AZ Alkmaar from Tuesday in a bid to regain match fitness and win a new contract.

Vlaar played for AZ for ten years as a youngster before moving to Feyenoord in 2006 and fans of the Eredivisie club are hopeful that he might even be tempted to stay permanently.

That does not appear to be the hope of AZ sporting director Earnie Stewart, who is quoted by Nordhoolands Dagblad as stating:

"We had already said that he is welcome to work with us to continue his recovery. Now that we've discussed some details he can.

"Temporary training arrangement. Ron is an international and stood last year in the semifinals of a World Cup. He has lived through the top of the world and is a player who can help our guys..."

Vlaar is likely to fall well outside of AZ's wage bracket and moves to Turkey and back to england have been mooted for when he recovers from his knee problem.

Villa fans will no doubt wish him all the best for the future, wherever he ends up.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch