Thursday 14 February 2013 9:46 pm

Brilliant Bale brace hands Spurs crucial first-leg advantage

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2 vs OLYMPIQUE LYONNAIS 1 WINGER Gareth Bale scored two stunning free-kicks to earn Tottenham victory in their Europa League last 32, first leg clash last night and the Wales star insisted: it was no fluke. Bale showcased his talent with two perfectly executed dead ball strikes, either side of Samuel Umtiti’s blistering half-volley for Lyon, to give Spurs a slender advantage ahead of next week’s second leg in France. And the 23-year-old, who has scored all six of Spurs’ goals in their last four games, revealed he had been putting in the hours when it comes to hitting the perfect free-kick. “I’ve been practising free-kicks on the training ground and I scored one like that last week [against Newcastle],” he said. “Both came at good times in the game. “Lyon are a good team and we weren’t 100 per cent, but the most important thing is we got the win.” Bale opened the scoring in first-half stoppage time with a looping free-kick from 35 yards, but Umtiti levelled with a fine half-volley. Bale had the final say though, with a 25-yard strike in the last minute.

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