Gareth Bale to miss up to two weeks

December 1, 2012
By ESPN.com news services

Gareth Bale is expected to be out of action for up to two weeks after suffering a hamstring injury during Tottenham's 3-0 win over Fulham on Saturday, manager Andre Villas-Boas said.

Bale hobbled off in the second half of the London derby after falling awkwardly following a shot at goal.

Spurs fans feared their star winger could be set for a long-term layoff, but Villas-Boas played down those concerns after the match.

The Tottenham manager also lost Michael Dawson during the game to a hamstring injury, but he could be fit for next weekend's game at Everton.

"Both Bale and Dawson have suffered hamstring muscle injuries," the Spurs boss said in his postmatch news conference. "One looks more serious than the other although both are controllable. With muscle injuries it's very difficult but it might keep him out for one to weeks. Dawson a little bit less."

Villas-Boas defended Bale after the winger was booked for diving for a second successive game Saturday.

"Gareth is so fast so it is very difficult (for referees) to judge situations," Villas-Boas said. "He has suffered big, big injuries to his ankles before and sometimes he wants to protect himself a little bit. He might put his body in situations that the referee thinks that he is diving and he is suffering for it in these last two games.

"He is now very near suspension for two unfair yellow cards and I think you gain a reputation for being a diver unfairly sometimes. This player has suffered a lot in his career. It's a little bit harsh on him."

Information from Press Association was used in this report.