Gareth Bale could return from a hamstring injury in time for Tottenham’s clash against Swansea next weekend according to manager Andre Villas-Boas.

The Welshman was absent from Tottenham's dramatic 2-1 defeat against Everton after picking up the strain in victory over Fulham a week ago, and also missed the 3-1 midweek win over Panathinaikos in the Europa League.

However he may be fit to return for the clash at White Hart Lane against Swansea next Sunday according to Villas-Boas, who also praised Clint Dempsey for stepping into his shoes.

“There is a strong possibility Gareth Bale could be fit for our next game,” the Portuguese coach said. “But I felt Clint Dempsey did well in his position on the left.”

The Welshman’s absence was felt as Spurs’ run of three consecutive wins came to an abrupt halt when just moments before they appeared set to make it four on the bounce.

Clint Dempsey had put his side ahead in the second half with a deflected strike, only for two dramatic late goals from Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic to snatch the spoils for the Toffees.

Villas-Boas was left to bemoan his side’s luck as they missed out on the chance to consolidate a place in the top four.

"The problem was that Everton became a bit more aggressive with their approach play and started hitting us with long balls, and we suffered as a consequence," he said. "It was a very disappointing result."

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