Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 QPR – Match Review

Gareth Bale struck twice to stretch Tottenham’s unbeaten run to seven games in a relatively comfortable 3-1 win against QPR at White Hart Lane.

The Welsh winger scored in each half, sandwiching a Rafael Van der Vaart strike, to send Harry Redknapp’s men into fifth and put their poor start to the season firmly behind them. The duo gave Spurs a two goal advantage going half time before Jay Bothroyd nodded in his first goal for Rangers to give their travelling fans hope of a comeback. Those thoughts were quickly dashed as Bale tied the game up with a superb third goal to make it six wins in their last seven games. R’s boss Neil Warnock will be pleased with his sides display as they sought a second consecutive London derby victory after they triumphed over Chelsea last week. But they failed to match their hosts with Bale and Aaron Lennon causing problems on the wings all afternoon. In fact Spurs should have been at least four up before break with visiting keeper Paddy Kenny enduring a busy first forty five minutes.

Van der Vaart was the first to test him from a free kick before the Dutchman saw his cross headed over by Emmanuel Adebayor as the home side started brightly. Their passing and movement was a delight to behold as Rangers struggled to cope with the pace and ingenuity of Redknapp’s front five. It was no surprise when they took the lead with just 20 minutes on the clock through the industrious Bale with a more direct approach bearing fruit. Brad Friedel’s long punt upfield was flicked on by Adebayor into the path of Van der Vaart who in turn played Lennon in down the right. The winger cut inside and teed up Bale to crash home an unstoppable effort from the edge of the area for his first goal at the Lane since New Years day. He should have doubled the lead moments later but could only send Benoit Assou Ekotto’s cutback well over the bar. The away side tried in vein to get themselves back into the game but they were two down before they could even blink with Van der Vaart cooly finishing from 16-yards after Ledley King’s long range effort deflected into his path.

Despite taking a lead into the break it was Rangers who started the better of the two sides in the second half with Warnock opting for a more attacking approach bringing Jamie Mackie and Jay Bothroyd on for the ineffective pairing of Sean Derry and Adel Taarabt. It paid instant dividends as Heidar Helguson shot wide before flicking on a corner to the waiting Bothroyd who nodded in from close range for his first Premier League goal in five years. That was as good as it good for the visitors as Van der Vaart tested Kenny from range once again before Bale made sure of the points with a sublime goal. Exchanging passes with the lively Lennon the Welshman unleashed a stunning left footed strike that flew into the top corner to seal a comfortable win and keep Spurs firmly in the top six.