Gareth Bale is very good. He is good at football. He kicks balls towards the net and runs fast.
I have many feels about this game, because it was weird and manic. A lot of players were not very good, and Gareth Bale was amazing. Tottenham Hotspur had spells of dominance, spells of incompetence, and ultimately came away with what they needed to win three points. Players got injured for Spurs and Newcastle United, Hugo Lloris had to make big saves, sitters were missed, and Tottenham ultimately won, 2-1.
Bale scored both of Spurs' goals, and should have had a hat trick. He opened the scoring in the first half with a fantastically placed free kick after a stellar start from Tottenham, where they looked fluid and active and threatening. Unfortunately, their lead didn't last to halftime. In the 24th minute, Moussa Sissoko found Yoan Gouffran at the top of the box with a square ball, and the Frenchman finished. Scott Parker failed to get back and cover, while Kyle Walker failed to track Gouffran's run. Kyle Naughton also didn't do much to stop Sissoko on the right flank.
Things got sloppy in the second half, with neither team playing particularly well. Gouffran picked up an injury and had to leave the game, which significantly hindered the Magpies. Spurs also had to deal with tired and off-the-pace-looking players. Lewis Holtby was substituted for fitness reasons, while Parker and Clint Dempsey struggled throughout the match.
With Spurs looking like they didn't have another goal in them, Bale scored the winner out of absolutely nowhere in the 78th minute. On a long ball right at the defensive line, Bale chipped past Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor, then surged past them into open space. Tim Krul positioned himself well, but Bale placed a perfect shot between his legs to put Tottenham ahead.
The final minutes were frantic, with Moussa Dembele picking up an injury, Bale missing two clear chances, Steven Caulker missing an unmarked header and Lloris coming up with a miracle stop to keep Spurs' three points intact. Each team could have easily scored two more goals.
Tottenham were hardly convincing, but between Bale's brilliance and the result, no one will be complaining about the outcome of the game. Wins all count the same, and Spurs are in third place ahead of Chelsea's game against Wigan.