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White Hart Lane (ATT 36,190) 4th May 2013 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: M Clattenburg

Tottenham Tottenham Hotspur vs Southampton Southampton

Tottenham 1

G Bale (86)

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Premier League: Gareth Bale scores winner as Tottenham beat Southampton 1-0

By Tom McDermott @FootballMcD.   Last Updated: 05/05/13 7:48am

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Gareth Bale: Celebrates his winner against Southampton

Gareth Bale: Celebrates his winner against Southampton

Gareth Bale capped a memorable week by scoring the winner to keep Tottenham's Champions League hopes alive as they beat Southampton 1-0 at White Hart Lane in the Premier League.

All the talk before the game was about the Welshman, who on Thursday added the Football Writers' Footballer of the Year award to the Professional Footballers' Association Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards he won last week.

Best of the match

  • Save of the match: Hugo Lloris made a string of fine stops as Southampton threatened to take the lead but his save from Rickie Lambert's free-kick stood out.
  • Moment of the match: There was only one! Gareth Bale's solo strike was fit to grace any ground in world football.
  • Goal of the match: Bale collected the ball on the right before cutting inside and firing into the bottom corner. He deserves to be playing in the Champions League next season. Will Spurs?
  • Man of the match: Two words: Gareth Bale.

But it was a first half to forget for Bale and Tottenham as they were outplayed for large periods by Southampton.

The excellent Nathaniel Clyne had the visitors' first chance when he found himself clean through on the right but appeared to drag his shot wide of Hugo Lloris's goal.

Spurs then lost influential midfielder Mousa Dembele on 35 minutes with what looked like a hamstring injury.

Lewis Holtby came on in place of the Belgian and could only watch as Rickie Lambert's free-kick was expertly tipped onto the post by Lloris. Steven Davis was quickest to react to the follow-up but his header was tame and straight at the French goalkeeper.

Tactically Mauricio Pochettino's side got it spot on during the first period and prevented Spurs from having any notable attempts at Artur Boruc's goal.

The second half started in pretty much the same fashion. Spurs struggled to get a grip on the game and Adam Lallana tricked Michael Dawson before firing at Lloris.

As the game reached the closing stages Emmanuel Adebayor was sent on in place of Clint Dempsey and, when the Togolese forward sent Bale free, it appeared the home side may claim their first penalty at home for two years but referee Mark Clattenburg waved away the Spurs players protests.

Mauricio Pochettino feels Southampton deserved at least a point from their game with Tottenham.

Then, on 86 minutes, Bale illuminated what was largely a forgettable game. Picking the ball up on the right wing from Kyle Walker he cut inside before unleashing a sensational shot past Boruc and into the bottom corner.

It wrapped up a remarkable week for Bale and kept alive his side's hopes of playing Champions League football next season.

Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas was again left to reflect on the influence of Bale, who had been well shackled by Southampton for most of the game.

"Again, it was decided by a great moment of individual brilliance," said Villas-Boas.

"We kept on pushing and Gareth played in three different positions today - as striker, then on the left and on the right to try and get the best out of him."

Pochettino felt Southampton did not deserve to lose and that his side were the better team for long periods.

"Yes, we played a very good game today and we deserved to leave this game with a result," said Pochettino.

"What's really important is that we competed and during long spells of the game we actually played better than Tottenham. But it's a shame not to get anything from out of this game."

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Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Liverpool 34 77
2 Chelsea 35 75
3 Manchester City 33 71
4 Arsenal 34 67
5 Everton 34 66
6 Tottenham Hotspur 35 63
7 Manchester United 33 57
8 Southampton 35 49
9 Newcastle United 35 46
10 Stoke City 35 44
11 Crystal Palace 35 43
12 West Ham United 35 37
13 Swansea City 35 36
14 Hull City 33 36
15 Aston Villa 34 35
16 West Bromwich Albion 33 33
17 Norwich City 34 32
18 Cardiff City 35 30
19 Fulham 35 30
20 Sunderland 34 29