Tottenham 3 QPR 1
Gareth Bale netted twice as Tottenham won an entertaining London derby.
The Welshman opened the scoring before Raphael van der Vaart added Spurs’ second. Jay Bothroyd pulled a goal back for Rangers just after the hour mark, but Bale struck again to seal his team’s victory.
The home side started the game at a frantic pace and R’s keeper Paddy Kenny did well to keep out two Van der Vaart efforts.
With the pressure continuing to grow it was little surprise when Bale gave Harry Redknapp’s men the lead on 19 minutes.
The Welshman received Aaron Lennon’s pass just inside the penalty area before firing low into the bottom right-hand corner.
Van der Vaart, who caused Rangers numerous problems with his clever movement, added to the scoreline on 32 minutes when he reacted quickly to a wayward Ledley King shot on the edge of the penalty area before sending Kenny the wrong way.
With QPR struggling to have any impact, boss Neil Warnock opted for two changes at half-time, sending on Jamie Mackie and Bothroyd in place of Shaun Derry and the disappointing Adel Taarabt.
And those changes had the desired impact on 61 minutes when Heidar Helguson’s header from a corner was turned in by Bothroyd for his first Rangers goal.
With Rangers now in the ascendancy, Bale took matters into his own hands on 71 minutes with a stunning strike to give Spurs back their two-goal cushion.
He played a double one-two with Lennon before curling a stunning shot into the top corner.
Rangers nearly pulled a goal back late on when Luke Young was denied twice by last-ditch goal-line blocks by Bale and Younes Kaboul.