Bale seals Tottenham triumph
Gareth Bale's 10th goal of the season ensured that 10-man Tottenham leapfrogged Chelsea into fourth place after a hard-fought and ill-tempered 2-0 battle with Newcastle at White Hart Lane.
Bale's electric pace allowed him to beat Steven Taylor down the left before unleashing a powerful drive that beat Tim Krul after Aaron Lennon put the hosts ahead just before the hour.
Spurs ended the match with 10 men for the second time in two days after Younes Kaboul was dismissed for forcing his head onto Cheik Tiote's in what was an otherwise feisty encounter that produced six bookings.
Bale was the first to threaten, capitalising on Danny Simpson's mistake to race past Alan Smith and Fabricio Coloccini into the box - but the former Leeds man scrambled back to block the Welshman's six-yard shot.
Goalkeeper Krul reacted well to tip over Rafael Van der Vaart's curling free kick just before a Wilson Palacios mistake allowed Tiote to fire a weak shot at Spurs goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes with half an hour gone.
Roman Pavlyuchenko powered an effort towards goal but Krul pushed the ball onto his left-hand post before the ball ricocheted off the other stanchion and rolled out to safety. And Van der Vaart almost gave the home side the lead early in the second half when he flashed a curling shot over Krul but luckily for the away side, the ball fell just wide of the Newcastle goal.
Spurs broke the deadlock in the 57th minute when Lennon raced down the right and beat Krul with a low drive from inside the box after being given space by James Perch.
Tiote, who was lucky not to receive a second yellow for a foul on Luka Modric, then squared up to Kaboul after the midfielder slid in to tackle the defender.
The former Portsmouth player forced his head forward onto Tiote's and although not a clear headbutt, was enough to persuade referee Anthony Taylor to send Kaboul off.
Lennon shot just wide and any hopes of a Newcastle comeback were extinguished with 10 minutes left when Bale accelerated past Taylor before smashing a low angled drive past Krul for his 10th goal of the season.