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Tottenham 3-1 Wigan (Spurs Fan's Perspective)

Thursday 2nd February 2012
Another phenomenal performance from Gareth Bale was the highlight of a comfortable Spurs win on Tuesday evening. Wigan were unadventurous in the first half and could have been more than two goals down at half time. Spurs were excellent in the first half, but they were put under little pressure by a struggling Wigan side. The Latics remain last and, with a performance like theirs in the first half, you can see why. Flat and toothless, the biggest obstacle to Spurs' attack was an out of sorts Emmanuel Adebayor. The Togolese striker was wasteful, though strong in build up play. Van der Vaart was withdrawn after 20 minutes as a precaution but his absence was quickly forgotten. Modric, who was excellent on the night, drilled a shot past Al Habsi moments after Van der Vaart departed. Bale was in some sort of mood and he doubled the lead ten minutes later. In his most impressive match since Norwich, Bale could have had a hat trick but had to settle for two goals on this occasion. His second, Spurs' third was Bale at his devastating best. He shifted the ball onto his left foot and powered home from 20 yards.

The second half was less of a procession than the first, the introduction of Franco di Santo gave Wigan more bite and the Argentine was at the centre of an ugly incident that marred the closing stages of the match. Spurs fullback Benoit Assou-Ekotto lunged in as the Wigan striker attempted to turn him. He could easily have received a red card and was very lucky to avoid even having his name taken.

That incident and the potential injuries to Walker, Van der Vaart and Adebayor threatened to make the night one to forget for Spurs. Walker and Van der Vaart have both since confirmed that they are fine for Spurs' next match at Anfield.

Crucially, Spurs took advantage of points dropped by most of their rivals in this midweek round. As a result, the gap at the top is only five points. Some have gone so far as to put them back in the title race. They're not. But, with the poor form of Chelsea and Arsenal, Spurs' attentions are certainly on the two Manchester clubs. They welcome United to White Hart Lane in March and if they win that match, the title challenge may just be back on. For now, Spurs are playing well enough to be comfortable favourites for third; a result that was unimaginable in August.
Samuel Rooke

Total articles: 19

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