Gareth Bale’s hat-trick gave Tottenham Hotspur a comfortable victory over relegated Sheffield United as they continued their quest for European football.
Bale opened the first game when Serge Aurier promoted him before the right-hander reduced his strike to third in the second half.
The Welsh international was played by Son Heung-min for the second time – a tug-of-war strike in the top right corner.
The son finished the big game for the Spurs while scoring the fourth-best goal.
South Korea also had a disallowed goal due to a five-minute offside in the second half.
Bale said he was “feeling good” after starting a series of Premier League games.
“You must have to take your chances when they come,” he said. “I just needed to play the games and run the games, and I’m doing that now. I’m happy, and when I’m happy, I’m playing well.”
Spurs interim coach Ryan Mason added: “I said all this time Bale would never give up that ability in the third quarter to produce good performances. He is a world-class player – he has proved that many years ago.
“Most exciting thing is his attitude; he’s running for the team. He feels confident he’ll take chances.”
The result left Tottenham sitting five points in fourth place with a Champions League qualifier with four games.
Sheffield United, who got relegated on April 17 following a defeat by the Wolves, was shot once and failed to test goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.
Bale’s shine with a show of cruelty.
Bale’s hat-trick was only the second in the Premier League. The first since December 2012 when he netted three goals against Aston Villa.
He was one of two changes to the Spurs’ first team. Interim manager Mason called for Bale and Dele Alli to replace Harry Winks and Lucas Moura.
They both gave their best accounts – Alli showing a glimmer of quality in the first half before the end of the second.
But Bale stole the show, making a clever run after opening the game. Before hitting a decisive moment after a quick break from Son to the right.
Aurier’s third passing by Bale was also well-balanced. And the Welshman placed it in the lower right corner to close the hat-trick.
He was fully smiling and smiling as he collected the game ball and scored another milestone to become the sixth Welshman to surpass the goals of the 50 Premier League.
Bale returned to Spurs on loan all season from Real Madrid in September. And when asked if he would extend his stay. Mason said: “I think that is just a conversation at the end of the season. It’s important the next game.”
The Blades failed to bother Spurs.
Attention has already turned to Sheffield United’s next season. With a move to the Championship confirmed a few weeks ago.
They got bolstered by the return of Sander Berge from Norway, who replaced the break. And helped the Blades find balance in the middle of the pitch.
John Fleck pushed for a more advanced position and saw more football. But in reality, Sheffield United did not show any firefighting power to get anything in the game.
David McGoldrick and Oliver Burke came on behind the defense a few times. But they lacked the necessary support to build any chances.
In contrast, the first Sheffield United game and the only track came in the 65th minute when Oliver Norwood hit straight at Lloris.
The defeat means that the interim manager Paul Heckingbottom has seen his Sheffield United side concede 15 goals in his six Premier League appearances.
‘Some of our games were outstanding’ – they say
Tottenham interim head coach Ryan Mason said: “The attitude, the desire to compete and continue to compete for more than 95 minutes [was good]. We had some quality moments, but the courage to play in all the duels, in every action, was a lot of fun.
“We had a week where we were going to train and work with the players. We were very defensive as a team. Some of our playings were very outstanding.”
Sheffield United manager Paul Heckingbottom: “We put ourselves down and how we do it. If we always put ourselves down by the opposition, we will be fighting.
“It’s not a game we want to see. It didn’t do anything, and I can’t wait for the fans to come back because, in a stadium like this. We tried to build our spirits in the second half, but the game escaped us.”