Tottenham, Arsenal stay on course for Champions League next season

May 5, 2013

Tottenham and Arsenal relied on the strength of their wingers Saturday to stay on course for qualification for next season’s Champions League.

Gareth Bale smashed home a shot in 86th minute from the edge of the penalty area to lead Tottenham to a 1-0 victory over visiting Southampton in the Premier League. It was his 20th league goal of the season and came in his first game since he was honored as English soccer’s player of the year.

“A great moment of individual brilliance,” Tottenham Manager Andre Villas-Boas said.

It wasn’t enough to lift Tottenham above rival Arsenal. Theo Walcott scored the quickest goal of the season — after 20 seconds — to earn the Gunners a 1-0 win at Queens Park Rangers.

Arsenal climbed into third place — two points ahead of Chelsea and Tottenham but having played more games than both its London rivals. Chelsea visits Manchester United on Sunday.

At the bottom of the standings, Wigan avoided relegation with a 3-2 victory against West Bromwich Albion, keeping the team third-from-last but reducing the gap to Sunderland to two points.

Meantime, Hull will return to the Premier League after a three-year absence. It finished second in the League Championship ahead of Watford.

GERMANY: Borussia Dortmund held Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw in the Bundesliga before their Champions League final in three weeks.

Kevin Grosskreutz opened the scoring for host Dortmund with a volley in the 11th minute. Mario Gomez tied it with a header from Rafinha’s cross in the 23rd.

Dortmund was awarded a penalty kick when Nuri Sahin’s shot struck Jerome Boateng’s arm, but Manuel Neuer saved Robert Lewandowski’s effort in the 60th minute.

Bayern wrapped up the title with six rounds to go.

SPAIN: Cristiano Ronaldo headed in two goals to help Real Madrid beat Valladolid, 4-3, in a match that was overshadowed by growing dissatisfaction with Madrid Manager Jose Mourinho for criticizing the club.

Madrid’s ninth straight home win in league play denied Barcelona the chance to clinch the league title this weekend.

Madrid reduced Barcelona’s lead to eight points, meaning the Catalan side can’t seal the domestic title by beating Real Betis on Sunday.

Cahill’s goal leads New York

Tim Cahill scored on a rebound moments after a penalty kick save by Luis Robles as New York defeated Columbus, 1-0.

Cahill headed a rebound in the 80th minute after Andy Gruenebaum made the initial save off a shot by Jonathan Steele.

His third goal of the season came seven minutes after Robles went to his right to stop Federico Higuain’s penalty after Eddie Gaven was fouled by Brandon Barklage. . . .

Sam Cronin scored in the first minute of second-half injury time to give host San Jose a 2-2 draw against Montreal.

Justin Mapp scored in the 24th and 47th minutes to give Montreal a 2-0 lead. . . .

Mauro Rosales scored a goal in the 64th minute to give Seattle a 2-2 draw on the road against Philadelphia.

Danny Cruz scored twice for the Union. . . .

Luis Gil ended a scoring drought with a header just minutes into the second half and Javier Morales also scored to lead Real Salt Lake to a 2-0 victory over the visiting Vancouver Whitecaps.

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