'Dancing' Redknapp on his feet to applaud as Bale holds court at Lane

Tottenham Hotspur 3 (Bale 29, 64, Modric 34) Wigan Athletic 1 (McArthur 81)

White Hart Lane

As a manager who is not given to leaping about and hugging
assistants in moments of triumph, Harry Redknapp was unusually
demonstrative in his celebrations last night. When the goals went
in he ran a few paces down the touchline, he punched the air and he
applauded his own supporters. And this was only a home win against
Wigan Athletic.

After seven days in Southwark Crown Court, Redknapp was back in the place he knows best last night and he was feeling the love from the Tottenham support. This was his first appearance at White Hart Lane since his trial for tax evasion began and the warmth towards him seemed all the greater. For his part he seemed more responsive. The rest he left to Gareth Bale.

The Spurs winger scored a goal in either half and Luka Modric the other as Spurs overpowered Wigan with considerable ease. Redknapp has doubtless heard all the jokes about the importance of Bale – they really do not bear repeating – but last night the touch and composure of the club's marquee name made all the difference.

For Redknapp, who ended the day with a flurry of transfer activity, it was the perfect antidote to all those long hours in court. "I kept dancing around like a two-year-old," he said. "I thought 'Where have I found all this energy from?' It was nice to get on my feet."

He sold Roman Pavlyuchenko to Lokomotiv Moscow, although he could not be certain that was the club, for "decent money". Sebastian Bassong went to Wolves on loan. Louis Saha has signed for Spurs until the end of the season with an option for another year and Ryan Nelsen will also join from Blackburn until May. Despite uncertainty over a loan for Juventus winger Milos Krasic, Steven Pienaar did complete a loan return to his former club Everton.

Three points, two new players, two malcontents shifted out and ground made up on the leaders Manchester City who lost at Goodison Park. Redknapp may be back in court six tomorrow but at least he will have a spring in his step.

The only blight on the night was a calf strain for Rafael van der Vaart which necessitated his withdrawal after half an hour and is a worry for Redknapp. William Gallas is out "long-term", Redknapp said, with an injury in the same area. Kyle Walker (groin) and Emmanuel Adebayor (hamstring) are also concerns for Monday's game against Liverpool.

That aside, it was something of a stroll for Spurs – especially in the first half – when Wigan were particularly poor. Their manager Roberto Martinez described the first half as not "anywhere near good enough where we should be at this stage of the season" and bottom of the table with 15 games to go they really do have a task ahead of them.

Martinez's side were better in the second half and scored through a deflected shot from substitute James McArthur in the 80th minute of the game, his first for the club. Martinez said that referee Lee Probert should have dismissed the Spurs left-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto for a tackle on Franco di Santo towards the end of the game. "It was a red card," he said. "We were very fortunate because Franco escaped the tackle with minor injury and I've seen broken legs from that."

Otherwise his main complaint was that deadline day coinciding with Premier League matches had affected the preparation with his team, in particular Hugo Rodallega. The striker had been linked with a move to Spurs and was left on the bench by Martinez for last night's game.

"It becomes a bit of a circus," Martinez said. "One of my players was in the middle of that speculation and it's not the right way to approach one of the most important games for this football club. An individual's career should be second to that of the football club. I don't think it's right."

The first goal was created by Modric, a ball swung in from the left that Bale took on his chest and volleyed past Ali al-Habsi from close range. The second was a swivel from Modric on the edge of the Wigan area and a low drive past the goalkeeper.

The major area of concern for Spurs' defence in the first half was how Assou-Ekotto's afro would react to the freezing temperatures. In the event it looked magnificent throughout.

Bale's second goal came from very little at all. He picked the ball up on the left side of the area, faced up to Ben Watson and then found enough space to strike the ball into the far corner. There was also a debut for 19-year-old Cameron Lancaster. Job done for Spurs.

Match facts

Substitutes: Tottenham - Livermore (Van der Vaart, 31); Sandro (Walker, 76); Lancaster (Adebayor, 79). Wigan - McArthur (Gomez, 71); Sammon (Di Santo, 74); Crusat (Watson, 87).

Booked: Wigan - Crusat. Man of the match Bale. Match rating 7/10. Possession: Tottenham 53% Wigan 47%.

Attempts on target: Tottenham 13 Wigan 6.

Referee L Probert (Wiltshire).

Attendance 35,801.

New Articles
tvDownton Abbey Christmas special
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all