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  • 25 July 2012
  • • 03:30
  • • Stubhub Center, Carson, California
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LA Galaxy 1-1 Tottenham: Bale opener not enough to give Spurs victory on USA tour

LA Galaxy 1-1 Tottenham: Bale opener not enough to give Spurs victory on USA tour

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The Welshman opened the scoring with a well-placed header but saw David Lopes equalise for the hosts in an energetic and fiercely contested friendly in California

Gareth Bale's opener was cancelled out by David Lopes as Tottenham drew 1-1 in a testing opening friendly against LA Galaxy early on Wednesday morning.

Andre Villas-Boas welcomed back Bale, Rafael van der Vaart and Jermain Defoe to first-team action after they missed the win over Stevenage last week. There were also starts for new signings Jan Vertonghen and Gylfi Sigurdsson as Spurs sent out a strong team at the Home Depot Centre.

Bale operated off the left while, on the other flank, Andros Townsend continued his good form, cutting inside onto his favourite left foot to fire the first shot of the game, drawing a save from Brian Perk.

Spurs did not look entirely comfortable at the back but going forward they were asking questions and Defoe jinked inside and fired a dangerous shot towards the far corner, Perk saving again.

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In the 16th minute, Tottenham opened the scoring as Bale attacked a curling cross from Sigurdsson on the left flank, nodding his header past the keeper from approximately 12 yards.

Galaxy responded encouragingly and had appeals for a penalty turned down as AJ DeLaGarza's cross seemed to ricochet off Bale's arm.

But the hosts were always in the game, looking the sharper team in the first period, and this translated into an equaliser.

As Spurs half-cleared a corner, Marcelo Sarvas scurried across the box before slipping a neat pass in behind Bale and into the feet of Hector Jiminez, who squared his cross to the waiting centre-back Lopes to tap into an empty net.

There were injury troubles for Spurs though, as Van der Vaart hobbled off in the 35th minute with what looked like a groin injury, while Kyle Walker had to receive lengthy treatment on an ankle injury that led to his withdrawal from the game late on.

Defoe had a second good chance, heading Sigurdsson's in-swinging cross at goal but Perk was equal to it again. This was a rare Spurs opportunity, though, as Galaxy ended the half better.

Robbie Keane found himself played in on goal for the second time – the visitors' defence looking worryingly open – but the former Spur saw his low effort saved by the feet of Carlo Cudicini.

Ten minutes after half-time, a long ball from Younes Kaboul found Defoe in behind the Galaxy defence but his low finish across Brian Rowe just slipped past the post for a goal kick.

Sigurdsson will feel that he should have scored
Tottenham then had a blatant penalty appeal turned down after Bale latched onto a loose ball in the box only to be felled by a sprawling Rowe.

Seemingly motivated by the indecision of the referee, the Welshman careered past his opposite number minutes later to send a low cross into the Galaxy box for the arriving Sigurdsson. But the Icelander will feel that he should have scored as he coaxed the ball past the far post and wide.

Following a raft of second-half changes, David Bentley found himself in space on the edge of the box but his first-time shot was placed wide following a poor connection.

And, though Bentley produced a mixed display from the left, his cross with five minutes to go led to a great chance for Aaron Lennon, but his well-struck volley was deflected marginally wide.

Just as Spurs looked to be turning the screw, Jack McBean almost found the net in the closing stages for the Galaxy as his prodded finish was just turned wide for a corner. But that proved the final chance for the hosts as the game finished 1-1 in what will be viewed as an excellent workout for Tottenham.

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