Gareth Bale made his first appearance for Tottenham Hotspur for more than seven years but Manuel Lanzini ruined his homecoming with a superb stoppage-time equaliser as West Ham United grabbed an unlikely 3-3 draw, yesterday.
Welshman Bale, back in north London on loan from Real Madrid, came off the substitutes bench with 20 minutes remaining with Tottenham leading 3-0 after Son Heung-min’s goal in the first minute and a double by Harry Kane.
The stage looked set for Bale to mark his return in style but instead it was West Ham who recovered from a shocking opening 16 minutes to earn a point.
Fabian Balbuena’s 82nd minute header and Davinson Sanchez’s own goal had set up a nervy finale and then in the fourth minute of stoppage time Lanzini fired an unstoppable shot from outside the area to spark wild scenes of celebration from the visitors. Victory would have put Tottenham up into second place but they are in sixth place with West Ham in eighth.
It was only the third time in Premier League history that a side trailing by at least three goals going into the 80th minute had avoided defeat — the other times were West Bromwich Albion’s comeback to draw 5-5 against Manchester United in 2013 and Norwich City’s 4-4 draw with Middlesbrough in 2005.
While all the pre-match talk was of Bale making his first appearance for the club he left in 2013 for Madrid for a then world record 100 million euros, it was Tottenham’s deadly duo Son and Kane who appeared to have won the game for Spurs. Kane’s pass sent Son away inside the first minute and the South Korean curled a shot inside the far post.
In the eighth minute Son played a pass to Kane and the England skipper nutmegged Rice before whacking a shot past Lukasz Fabianski. In the 16th minute Son released Sergio Reguilon, who joined Spurs on the same day as Bale’s loan move was announced last month, and his cross invited Kane to head past Fabianski.
Tottenham were coasting in the second half and Kane was denied a hat-trick when his shot thumped the post. Balbuena’s header looked like being a mere consolation for the Hammers but when Sanchez headed into his own net the visitors suddenly sensed an escape route.
In a frenetic finale Bale almost made it 4-2 with a mazy run and shot from the right, but the last laugh went to Lanzini. After a free kick was only partially cleared, the ball fell to the Argentine and he sent an unstoppable shot in off the underside of the crossbar.
Brighton grab deserved
late point at Palace
Substitute Alexis Mac Allister struck late on with his first Premier League goal to secure Brighton and Hove Albion a deserved point in a 1-1 draw away at arch-rivals Crystal Palace.
Brighton dominated the game but could find no reply to Wilfried Zaha’s 19th-minute penalty until 21-year-old Argentine Mac Allister thumped one home in the 90th minute. There was still time for Brighton’s Lewis Dunk to get sent off in stoppage time, however, after his wild tackle on Palace defender Gary Cahill in a goalmouth scramble.
Brighton peppered Palace’s goal with 20 attempts compared to the one of the hosts. They have four points from their opening five games while Palace have seven and are in 12th spot. Brighton had been the better side early on but fell behind in tame fashion when Tariq Lamptey was judged to have fouled Michy Batshuayi in the area as a cross was played in.
There was not a great deal of contact but the VAR check agreed with referee Stuart Attwell, and Zaha made no mistake from the spot, firing past Mat Ryan for his fourth goal of the season. Palace showed little ambition after that as they protected their advantage.
Neal Maupay spurned two good chances for Brighton either side of halftime, the first when Solly March played in a low cross and Maupay’s shot on the turn lacked the power to beat Vicente Guaita. He also had a clear sight at goal after halftime but delayed and was closed down.
Brighton kept probing, though, and when Palace defender Joel Ward made a mess of dealing with a long punt in the last minute of normal time, Maupay shifted the ball across to Mac Allister, whose fierce shot clipped a Palace defender on its way into the bottom corner of the net.
Villa maintain perfect
start as Barkley
A superb stoppage-time goal from Ross Barkley gave Aston Villa a 1-0 victory at Leicester City in a scrappy contest that stretched the visitors’ perfect Premier League start to four wins.
The result left Villa second on 12 points with a game in hand over leaders Everton who have 13. Third-placed Liverpool have 10 from five and Leicester in fourth are on nine after suffering their second successive home defeat.
Barkley, who is on loan at Villa from Chelsea, snatched the winner out of the blue at the King Power stadium with a stinging low shot from 25 metres which left Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel clutching thin air, as the ball bounced in front of him.
The England midfielder, who also scored on his Villa debut in a 7-2 home drubbing of Liverpool in the previous round of matches, was delighted as they started the season with four wins for the first time since 1930. “An important win today as they were on top and we started slow but we improved and in the end deserved it,” he told Sky Sports.
Villa manager Dean Smith heaped praise on Barkley. “We have seen Ross Barkley do that enough times for Everton and Chelsea so we are pleased he did it for us today,” Smith told the BBC. “It was touch and go whether he started today. He had a knock to the knee but a great goal and a real battling performance by the whole team.”