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Monday 29 October 2012

Bale 'hailed' after Spurs win to go fourth

Tottenham winger scores against former side while Newcastle grab late win over West Brom

  • Jay Rodriguez's goal was not enough for Southampton to avoid defeat by Spurs

  • Demba Ba gave Newcastle against West Brom the lead with a spectacular shot

Southampton 1-2 Tottenham

Manager Andre Villas-Boas was pleased by the desire Tottenham Hotspur showed to hold on to three points at Southampton and return to fourth in the Barclays Premier League, hailing the impact of the returning Gareth Bale.

Spurs went ahead after 15 minutes courtesy of a Bale header before Clint Dempsey doubled their advantage six minutes before the break. Jay Rodriguez reduced the deficit but Southampton were unable to find an elusive leveller.

"I am happy for what we did in the game and certainly it was a good first half,” Villas-Boas said. "We kept the ball well, managed to create lots of opportunities and always looked in control of the game.

"They came out very, very strongly in the second half. As soon as they scored, the game changes and makes it more difficult. But in the second half we showed that desire to defend and hold onto the result."

"Gareth is a player that can make a different with small opportunities"
Andre Villas-Boas

After missing the home defeat by Chelsea last week, Bale returned to the fold against the side he began his career with and impressed in the first half at his old stomping ground.

"I am extremely happy for him," Villas-Boas said. "He is a massive player for the team. He is a player that can make a different with small opportunities.

"He certainly did that today and scored. It was good for him to be back on the scoresheet. He is certainly someone we rate very, very highly and can go all the way to becoming one of the best."

Despite his side still looking for their first league win, Southampton manager Nigel Adkins was pleased with his side’s recovery in the second half.

"We gave ourselves an opportunity to win the game and what we did in the second half we actually wanted to do in the first,” he said. "Let's give Spurs a little bit of credit because they slowed the game down very well from that point of view.

"They passed the ball and we had good possession of the football up until the final third, but just could not find a breakthrough. That is something we spoke about at half-time but in the second half it was a good performance from the players."

Matchday Live offers full commentary on the match, photostreams and all the statistics. Click on the link below for all the action.

FULL REPORT Southampton 1-2 Tottenham >>

Newcastle 2-1 West Brom

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew hopes Papiss Cisse's lucky winner against West Bromwich Albion at St James' Park can help kick-start the forward’s Barclays Premier League season.

Cisse’s deflection of Sammy Ameobi's shot past Ben Foster opened his league account for the campaign.

"It's sometimes very difficult with strikers because Papiss has looked exactly the same in training and he certainly doesn't look short of confidence” Pardew said. “He has been smashing them in from everywhere.

"But sometimes you have these runs where you don't get a goal, and that goal today will do him the world of good."

"In training Papiss has been smashing them in from everywhere"
Alan Pardew

Pardew admitted his side had been fortunate to snatch the three points.

"I am glad to see the back of West Brom,” he said. “They were excellent. They have got a real assurance about them. Everyone wanted the ball and made it very difficult for us. They probably thought they should have won it but our honesty won it for us in the end."

For West Brom manager Steve Clarke the manner of the defeat was a blow.

"We were terrific today and it's disappointing when you come to a place like this and you're the best team and not only do you not get a point but you don't come away with anything,” he said. "We've got a good squad of players and our performances have been really good.

"With a little bit of luck over the last couple of games we could have even more points, but we've been stuck on 14 which is cruel and is not fair.

"What hurts me most is the amount of effort and quality my players have put into their game for two weeks in a row, and they have come away with nothing."

Matchday Live offers full commentary on the match, photostreams and all the statistics. Click on the link below for all the action.

FULL REPORT Newcastle United 2-1 West Brom >>

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Key Points

  • Tottenham climb to fourth in the Barclays Premier League with a 2-1 win away to Southampton
  • A late Papiss Cisse goal gives Newcastle United a 2-1 victory at home to West Brom
  • Matchday Live offers full commentaries and photos of the matches as they happen followed by reports