A double from Gareth Bale along with a strike from Rafael Van Der Vaart helps Tottenham claim yet another London derby victory over QPR at White Hart LaneA double from Gareth Bale helped Tottenham to defeat Queens Park Rangers in the London derby to go back into fifth place in the Premier League.
Dutchman Rafael van der Vaart also claimed a goal, with substitute Jay Bothroyd having breathed some life into the game with a second-half strike, before Bale sealed the win with his second goal.
Harry Redknapp decided to bring back inspirational centre-back Ledley King into the starting line-up after he returned from a groin injury that he picked up during the draw away to Newcastle, while his opposite number Neil Warnock kept faith with Anton Ferdinand after a controversial week for the defender.
The home side should have gone into the lead after only two minutes as Luka Modric got the ball just outside the box and his strike was pounced on by Van der Vaart inside the area that led to the Dutchman’s shot being tipped round the post by Paddy Kenny.
From the resulting corner kick Spurs had another chance after the ball was half cleared by the QPR defence, a cross came in from the right which Bale managed to get a foot on and divert towards goal, but once again Kenny was up to the task, saving well to keep the sides level.
Warnock’s side suffered a blow within the first 10 minutes as Fitz Hall was forced from the field with an injury and that meant that the Loftus Road side had to replace the centre-back with Wales international Danny Gabbidon.
Spurs had a golden opportunity to take the lead as Van der Vaart whipped a free kick from the left wing that landed plum on the head of Emmanuel Adebayor, but the on-loan Manchester City frontman could not find the target as his chance went wide of Kenny’s left-hand post.
The visitors’ first chance came after a good passing move ended with Adel Taarabt finding Heidur Helguson just inside the area, but the Iceland international could not direct the ball towards Brad Friedel’s goal, as the ball sailed wide.
Redknapp’s side then went in front straight after that chance as the goal kick by Friedel was knocked on by Adebayor to Aaron Lennon, who found the onrushing Bale on the left wing, and he raced in and slid the ball beyond the outstretched arms of Kenny and into the back of the QPR goal to give his side the advantage.
Just before the half hour mark Spurs should have doubled their lead as Adebayor raced down the right wing, before hitting a powerful cross that found Benoit Assou-Ekotto, who then proceeded to cut the ball back to Bale, but unfortunately for the winger he got under the shot and it went over the bar.
The home side continued to dominate the game and were ultimately rewarded as the ball broke to King inside the QPR half and with the White Hart Lane crowd baying for the defender to shoot, he tried an effort that was going wildly wide before Van der Vaart latched onto it and placed the ball beyond Kenny for his fifth goal in five Premier League games.
They could have stretched their lead further only a couple of minutes later, as Van der Vaart chipped a corner from the left wing into the path of Modric, whose strike from the edge of the area went just over the bar.
Spurs continued to pile the pressure on the Premier League new boys, with a superb passing move leading to Assou-Ekotto getting the ball free on the left wing and finding Modric just inside the box, but once again the Croatian could not find the target as the ball went out for a goal kick to QPR.
The White Hart Lane side continued to look to go forward, with the visitors seemingly unable to find a way to put Friedel under any pressure at all as they were forced to go into the half-time break two goals down in the London derby.
But it was Spurs who could have killed the game off minutes into the second period as a throw in from Kyle Walker found Van der Vaart on the edge of the area and his drive looked to be nestling in the corner of the net before Kenny got down and clawed the ball wide for a corner.
The visitors then had a glorious chance to get back into the game as Shaun Wright-Phillips showed a superb piece of skill to chip the ball over Walker before cutting it back into the path of Helguson, but his shot went over the bar.
Just after the hour mark they got back into the game as a corner from the right was knocked back into the danger zone by Helguson and Bothroyd was on hand just a couple of yards out to knock the ball home to the delight of the QPR fans in the corner.
Kenny once again showed his worth for the Loftus Road side after he failed to deal with a Van der Vaart free kick, the Irish stopper then made two outstanding saves from both Adebayor then Bale in order to keep his side in the game.
QPR then went up the other end of the pitch and could have got level as Wright-Phillips knocked the ball to Alejandro Faurlin, who unleashed a superb strike from just outside the box that was saved by Friedel for a corner to the visitors.
The game then swung up to the other end, with Assou-Ekotto this time having an effort on goal from the edge of the area, but once again he was thwarted by Kenny as the keeper managed to turn the ball over for yet another corner.
Spurs eventually got their third of the game after a superb one-two between Bale and Lennon ended with Welshman curling a shot round the helpless Kenny to double his tally for the game and restore the home side’s two goal cushion.
With quarter of an hour left Spurs should have killed the game off as a contest as Lennon showed a great piece of skill to find Adebayor inside the box, but the Tottenham striker failed to find the target as his shot went wide of goal.
The visitors could have pulled one back as Mackie raced into the middle of the pitch and the Scotland international found an unmarked Wright-Phillips on the left-hand side, but his curling strike went wide of target.
QPR had a series of chances inside injury time, but they failed to find the target and thus ended up leaving White Hart Lane with nothing at the end of the game.
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