Bale's brace boosts Spurs
London, England (Sports Network) - Gareth Bale scored a last-minute match- winner in spectacular fashion on Monday as Tottenham edged West Ham, 3-2, at Upton Park.
Tottenham entered Monday's London derby riding high after knocking Lyon out of the Europa League last week and extended its unbeaten run in the Premier League to an impressive 11 consecutive matches behind a pair of goals by Bale and one from Gylfi Sigurdsson.
The victory moves Spurs past Chelsea, which stumbled to a 2-0 loss to Manchester City over the weekend, and into third place in the Premier League with 51 points.
Bale got Spurs off to a fantastic start just 13 minutes into the game when he intercepted a poor ball by West Ham defender Guy Demel at the top of the box, took a few touches to his left and ripped a low, left-footed strike past Hammers goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen and just inside the far post.
West Ham drew level in the 25th minute after Andy Carroll was taken down in the box via a rash challenge from Scott Parker, resulting in a penalty kick. Carroll stepped up and got a little more air under the kick than he wanted, but it floated into the top right corner for the tying goal.
The hosts went in front in the 58th minute after Joe Cole brought down a lofted pass into the box, turned and fired it across his body and past Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
But the traveling side put the teams back on even terms in the 76th minute with Bale playing the role of facilitator. The Welsh winger floated a ball into the box on a free kick and it bounced around among a mass of bodies before Sigurdsson found it and popped it past Jaaskelainen to make it 2-2.
Bale's winner came in the 90th minute and was a moment of pure brilliance. After receiving a pass from Thomas Carroll, he worked his way forward a few strides and unleashed a wicked left-footed rocket into the top corner, leaving Jaaskelainen with no chance for a save.
West Ham remains in 14th place with 30 points after the setback.