x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Pre-season: Villas-Boas unhappy after tackle on Bale

Chelsea suffer defeat to AC Milan while Tottenham draw 0-0 with Liverpool in their latest games in the USA.

Tottenham's Gareth Bale tries to challenge Liverpool's Joe Cole for the ball during their pre-season clash in Baltimore
Tottenham's Gareth Bale tries to challenge Liverpool's Joe Cole for the ball during their pre-season clash in Baltimore

Liverpool midfielder Charlie Adam has been slated by Andre Villas-Boas, the Tottenham Hotspur manager, for his heavy challenge on Gareth Bale during their goalless pre-season friendly in the United States last night.

Tottenham and Liverpool played out a 0-0 draw at the M&T Bank Stadium, home of NFL franchise the Baltimore Ravens.

In a game which marked the Liverpool debut of summer signing Fabio Borini, Villas-Boas was critical of Adam - who has previous history with Bale.

In May 2011 the Scotland international injured Bale in a tackle, an incident Villas-Boas was only made aware of following game in Baltimore.

Bale was out for three months with ankle ligament damage after that incident and Villas-Boas was unhappy with Adam's latest challenge.

"I think it was a very nasty challenge from Charlie," he said.

"The player had gone and he came in from behind on Gareth's ankle. I did not know the previous history between the two. I do now.

"It is a difficult one to be fair. You do not want to end up in a game with Liverpool with 10 men.

"At half-time Charlie came to me and said something about the challenge.

"I can accept that but I think he should go to the player to say sorry."

The incident left Villas-Boas waiting to hear on the seriousness of Bale's injury.

He added: "If the player escapes hospital it is because he is very lucky. The last time he was out for three months and in the end it is the Premier League that suffers without a player of Bale's talent."

Bale's appearance on Spurs' United States tour had already caused controversy as he scored in the game with Los Angeles Galaxy on Wednesday despite having pulled out of the Team GB squad for the Olympics with a back injury.

Meanwhile Chelsea suffered a 1-0 defeat to Serie A side AC Milan as Urby Emanuelson got the only goal of their pre-season friendly fixture in Miami.

Emanuelson was on hand to tap home the rebound from close range after 67 minutes when a shot from Stephan El Shaarawy was saved by Petr Cech.

Chelsea's best chance came early in the game but when Lampard's delivery was headed back across goal by Branislav Ivanovic the loose ball was fired over the bar by John Terry who slipped just as he was about to shoot.

Lampard nearly set up Emanuelson for the opener early in the second half when he gave the ball away to the Dutchman but after beating Terry he shot at Cech.

Emanuelson made no mistake with 13 minutes to go when he forced the ball home following Cech's save from El Shaarawy.

The Chelsea goalkeeper then did well to save at the feet of Mattia Valoti as Milan tried to extend their lead late in the game.

Despite the defeat at least manager Roberto Di Matteo got to see summer signings Eden Hazard and Marko Marin in action for the Blues on the latest leg of their tour of the United States.

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