Gareth Bale was the star of the show once again as Tottenham Hotspur overcame Lyon in the Europa League last 32 first leg at White Hart Lane.

The winger produced two stunning free-kicks, the second coming with the final kick of the game, to enhance his reputation as one of the world's form players.

Bale scored from 35 yards just before the break, and though Lyon's Samuel Umtiti was able to leveled with a half volley on 55 minutes, the Welshman's deadly set-piece skills again came to the fore in the last minute to hand Spurs a valuable frist-leg lead ahead of next week's trip to France.

Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale scored a brace for Tottenham, and continues to be the standout star for the club.

Scott Parker said of Bale: "I see Gareth practise those free-kicks quite a lot after training. That's what you deserve when you put the practice in. It comes off."

Bale was equally delighted at his performance, saying Tottenham could have performed even better.

"I'm delighted," he said. "I've been practicing free-kicks on the training ground and I scored one like that last week. Both came at good times in the game.

"Lyon are a good team and we weren't 100 per cent to be honest - we looked a bit tired. But the most important thing is we got the win. It's going to be hard going over there, but we're taking this competition seriously."

Andre Villas-Boas, seeking his second Europa League success, has been insistent on taking the second tier European competition seriously, with the Portuguese tactician seeing the tournament as a test of Spurs' Champions League, credentials.