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Aston Villa 0-4 Tottenham

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Bale: Hat-trick hero

Bale: Hat-trick hero

Gareth Bale scored a second-half hat-trick as Tottenham piled the misery on Aston Villa with a 4-0 thumping at Villa Park.

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Paul Lambert's side went into the match on the back of their humiliating 8-0 defeat at Chelsea on Sunday and showed no sign of improvement in the first half, despite going in goalless at the break.

Bale looked hungry for goals and forced two fine saves out of Brad Guzan with long-range efforts, while Jermain Defoe was also denied by the American goalkeeper from a one-on-one opportunity.

Villa looked like a changed team as they resurfaced for the second half but Christian Benteke wasted two opportunities by straying offside.

Defoe showed a more clinical touch in front of goal before the hour mark as he latched on to Kyle Naughton's through ball and poked a shot through Guzan's legs to score his 10th goal of the campaign.

The goal opened the floodgates and a series of mistakes from the Villa back-line allowed Bale through on goal, and he showed good composure to round the keeper and score his first of the game.

The Welsh winger doubled his tally on 73 minutes with a low drive into the bottom corner and, with Spurs cruising, he wrapped up his first ever Premier League hat-trick on 84 minutes with a powerful finish.

Spurs have now won five out of their last seven Premier League games and have kept clean sheets in their last three, a run which has seen them rise back into the Champions League places.

It is a different story for Villa however. They now have the worst goal difference in the top flight and sit just three points above the relegation zone, making Wigan's trip to Villa Park on Saturday all the more important.

Posted: 26/12/12 19:54

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