Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Bale absence confirmed after scan

Gareth Bale

Tottenham's flickering hopes of Champions League qualification have been dealt a blow with the confirmation Gareth Bale will miss the rest of the season after suffering a ruptured ankle ligament during Saturday's 1-1 draw against Blackpool.

Bale came off in the second half of the draw at White Hart Lane after a robust challenge from Charlie Adam, which meant the Welshman had to leave the ground on crutches.

The club have confirmed the PFA Player of the Year will wear a protective boot for the next 12 days before starting a rehabilitation regime. Despite the seriousness of the injury, he is expected to be fit for the start of pre-season training at the start of July.

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp was under no illusions as to how difficult the fight to close the six-point gap that separates his team and City would be, even before the seriousness of Bale's injury had been confirmed.

"It will take a miracle," said Redknapp, who knows anything but a win at Eastlands on Tuesday will mean the end of the club's top-four hopes.

"(City manager) Roberto Mancini has got a fantastic squad. They're in a great position. They are six points ahead of us and they have a better goal difference by miles."

Bale has been forced to miss nine of Tottenham's games in the second part of the season due to back and hamstring problems.

His absence has coincided with the club's slump in form, but Redknapp is confident his squad will be able to cope without him.

"It's a blow but we have been without Gareth quite a bit recently," Redknapp added.

"He has had a fantastic season. The first three-quarters of the season he was unplayable, but over the last couple of months the injury situation has taken its toll on him. During that time he hasn't quite been the same boy."

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