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Jol pleased to nullify Bale

17 March 2013 21:37

Martin Jol praised his Fulham side for restricting Gareth Bale to his 'quietest game' during their 1-0 win over Tottenham on Sunday.

A goal from former Spurs striker Dimitar Berbatov in the second half was the difference between the sides as the hosts saw their push for Champions League football take a blow.

Bale saw a headed effort cleared off the line in the opening stages, but despite the early chance, Fulham managed to keep the Welsh international at bay.

"I think we kept it simple today with Bale and (Mousa) Dembele, it was probably the quietest game for Bale," Jol told reporters.

"They are strong and with Bale, we showed all the videos and in the end I left maybe 90 per cent out because it was almost like a trauma at the end for my boys.

"I think the first half we tried to restrict them and we didn't play as well as we could, but we were very well organised.

"I think the second half was much better and we should have scored the second (goal) with (Ashkan) Dejagah and maybe (Brede) Hangeland and put everything to bed and over with, but we couldn't so they are such a strong team we had to be nervous until the end."

Jol also praised Berbatov for his contribution, revealing that he and the striker had made a deal prior to the game meaning that the Bulgarian could have a day off if he managed to grab a goal.

He added: "(Berbatov) said 'you have to trust me'. I thought he was joking, but he said it before the match against Stoke. But he's a wonderful player.

"The only thing he wants is a day off if he scores. So I promise him a day off and he scores. Remarkable boy."

The win marks Fulham's first victory at White Hart Lane since 2003. The former Tottenham manager denied that there was any personal satisfaction in beating his old team, instead focusing on the three points which takes his side nine clear of the relegation zone.

Jol added: "It's only about the three points, and it's nice that it is here because White Hart Lane is so difficult to go to and get a result."

Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas refused to criticise his players' effort, but conceded they had some work to do on the training pitch.

"It was nothing to do with the players," Villas-Boas said.

"The effort and commitment were there. Probably the organisation wasn't, and it is down to us to get to business and correct that."

The Portuguese also urged caution against a similar dip in form that cost Spurs a Champions League place last term under Harry Redknapp.

Spurs sit four points ahead of Arsenal in the final Champions League spot with the Gunners also having a game in hand.

"You can't hide from what has happened in the past with Spurs," Villas-Boas said.

"You just have to make sure that we are able to fight against it. It has been difficult month for us.

"If we are able to find our form or confidence and win then we can end that cycle that Spurs normally have. We just have to work hard."

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Championship table

# Team MP D P
9 0 +0 0
10 0 +0 0
11 0 +0 0
12 0 +0 0
13 0 +0 0

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