Norwich City 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur: Player Ratings

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Norwich City 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur: Player Ratings
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images
Gareth Bale rescued Spurs.

Gareth Bale scored a superb individual goal to rescue Spurs and stretch their unbeaten league run to eight games.

As Spurs dominated their hosts but struggled to create chances, Bale sprinted from his own half and curled the ball past Mark Bunn with just 10 minutes left at Carrow Road.

André Villas-Boas’ side only really threatened after the introduction of Lewis Holtby, who made his debut after his recent switch from Schalke. His impact emphasised Spurs’ lack of quality up front, and Villas-Boas will surely be pressing home to his chairman Daniel Levy the need to invest in a striker before the transfer window shuts.

The Spurs manager made five changes from last weekend’s FA Cup fourth-round defeat at Leeds United.

Hugo Lloris was back in goal in place of Brad Friedel. Kyle Walker replaced Kyle Naughton at right-back while Michael Dawson, Mousa Dembélé and Jermain Defoe replaced Steven Caulker, Tom Huddlestone and Gylfi Sigurdsson, all of whom were poor at Elland Road.

They were also boosted by the presence of Holtby on the bench. 

Despite that Cup disappointment, Spurs went to Carrow Road on the back of some good Premier League form. They were buoyed by a much-deserved equaliser against Manchester United, which maintained an unbeaten record going back to the late collapse against Everton in early December.

Norwich, meanwhile, were on a run of no wins from six games that included five defeats.

In blustery conditions, the start of the game was messy with neither side able to establish an early pattern.

The home side looked more threatening, pressing Spurs and hitting Grant Holt with direct balls.

That tactic paid off when Wes Hoolahan finished from close range after Anthony Pilkington teed him up.

Spurs had little control in midfield and only started to put Norwich under pressure as the second half went on.

But just when it looked as if they were not going to get the equaliser, Bale surged forward in typical style to finish brilliantly into the far corner.

Spurs kept up the pressure in the last 10 minutes but lacked the class to get the winner. It is the second time they have drawn 1-1 with Norwich this season.

They have a lot of work to do—and surely must add attacking options—if they are to stay in the hunt for fourth.

Read on to see how we rated the players.

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