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Gareth Bale: Tottenham will take on Arsenal with confidence

George Sessions, PA
·3-min read

Gareth Bale insists Tottenham are full of confidence ahead of the upcoming north London derby with Arsenal.

The Real Madrid loanee struck a brace in Sunday’s 4-1 victory over Crystal Palace to continue his own excellent form.

Bale has hit a purple patch during the last month with six goals and three assists in his last six games in all competitions to help Spurs put together a five-game winning streak.

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It has ignited their top four hopes in the Premier League at a crucial time, with a short trip to rivals Arsenal up next in the division on Sunday.

“Going into next week’s game we have confidence behind us now but we know it’s going to be difficult,” Bale said.

“Obviously a midweek game (against Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League) before that but we’ll recover and go again.”

Given Bale has started three games in a row, it is likely the Welshman will be on the bench for Thursday’s home tie with the Croatian outfit.

He talked up the overall attacking quality in the squad after Harry Kane also hit a double in the triumph over Palace while Dele Alli, Steven Bergwijn, Tanguy Ndombele, Erik Lamela and Carlos Vinicius were all on the bench.

Bale told Spurs TV: “All the players, not just the ones playing but the ones on the bench, are all great players and we have to keep working hard and putting in performances to stay in the team.

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“It was great to get the three points and keep building on our winning run and keep that winning mentality going.”

A Christian Benteke leveller on the stroke of half-time threatened to spoil proceedings for the hosts, but Bale completed his brace in the 49th minute before Kane produced a stunning effort three minutes later.

“Maybe it was the best thing for that to happen,” Bale admitted regarding the equaliser.

“It kind of kickstarted us again in the second half and we were going, attacking and pressing them high. I think it was the catalyst for us to really kick on and dominate the game.”

Benteke’s headed effort was one of the few positives for Palace to take from the loss, which ended their three-match unbeaten run.

Eagles boss Roy Hodgson was able to welcome top scorer Wilfried Zaha back as a second-half substitute following a month on the sidelines with a hamstring injury and his fellow forward is delighted to see him return.

“I know Wilf as someone who is always fit and it’s rare when he picks up an injury,” Benteke told Premier League Productions.

“Now, with the 10 games left, we will need him. We will need his presence, his skills and his ability to score goals for us.

“We have to keep going. We know all the end games are always tough because the teams are playing for Champions League or (to avoid) relegation so it won’t be easy, but I think we’ve got the squad to look up and win games.”