Bale keeps Tottenham hopes alive as Wigan escape act gathers pace
May 4, 2013 -- Updated 2041 GMT (0441 HKT)
Lone hero: Gareth Bale acknowledges the home fans after his late winner against Southampton.
- Gareth Bale scores Tottenham's late winner against Southampton
- Bale has won a host of awards for his EPL performances this season
- North London rivals Arsenal up to third after 1-0 win over QPR
- Wigan revive hopes of avoiding relegation with victory at WBA
(CNN) -- The English Premier League's man of the moment Gareth Bale kept Tottenham Hotspur's Champions League hopes alive with a stunning late winner against his former club Southampon Saturday.
The White Hart Lane faithful were fearing the worst and a disheartening goalless draw when Bale brushed aside Luke Shaw before crashing home an 86th minute winner from outside the penalty area.
It was his 25th goal of the campaign -- topping off a week when he was named the Football Writers' Association Player of the Year to go with his double success at the Professional Footballers' Association awards.
The value of the winning goal and the subsequent three points was highlighted when North London rivals Arsenal continued their fine late season run with a 1-0 win at already relegated Queens Park Rangers in the late kickoff.
Read: Bale destined for greatness?
Friedel: 'Bale can be world's best'
CNN Football Club: Bayern dominate Barca
Theo Walcott scored the only goal of the match after just 21 seconds, the fastest in the EPL this season, to lift his team to third in the standings on 67 points after six wins in eight games.
Chelsea, who are playing newly crowned champions Manchester United Sunday, trail by two points with two games in hand.
Tottenham also have 65 points and have played one game less than Arsenal in a desperately tight battle for the top four qualification spots for the Champions League next season.
At the bottom end of the table, perennial relegation escapees Wigan stepped up their bid to survive again with a dramatic 3-2 win at West Bromwich Albion.
They twice trailed before Callum McManaman side footed the late winner after brilliant work by Shaun Maloney.
Shane Long and Gareth McAuley had given WBA their leads, canceled out by strikes from Arouna Kone and substitute James McArthur, who netted with his first touch.
Read: Chelsea to play Benfica in Europa final
McManaman grabbed the third in the 80th minute and Roberto Martinez's men held on for a precious three points.
Hargreaves: Scholes is the best
CNN Football Club: German giants rise
The FA Cup finalists are just two points below fourth-bottom Sunderland, who host Stoke City Monday, and three points adrift of Newcastle United, who could only draw 0-0 at West Ham United.
Norwich are also looking over their shoulders after Gabriel Agbonlahor completed a fine week for Aston Villa with a 2-1 away win at Carrow Road.
Villa hammered Sunderland 6-1 earlier in the week and on 40 points look assured of another season in the English top flight.
Elsewhere, deposed champion Manchester City were held to a 0-0 draw at Swansea City while already doomed Reading scored a fine 4-2 win at Fulham.
On the final day of action in the second flight, Hull City secured a place in the Premier League for next season after drawing 2-2 at home to champions Cardiff City.
Watford, Brighton and Hove Albion, Crystal Palace and Leicester City will contest the play-offs for the third promotion spot to the riches of the EPL.
Part of complete coverage on
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1328 GMT (2128 HKT)
He's just 15 and the world is seemingly already at his feet. Norway's Martin Odegaard is provoking huge media interest and the hungry attention of Europe's top clubs.
August 15, 2014 -- Updated 1151 GMT (1951 HKT)
Last season Jose Mourinho wrote off the title of hopes of his "little horse" -- but now he has a squad primed to dethrone Manchester City.
August 14, 2014 -- Updated 1858 GMT (0258 HKT)
Luis Suarez will have to wait until late October to make his competitive Barcelona debut his ban for biting an opponent was partially upheld.
August 14, 2014 -- Updated 1649 GMT (0049 HKT)
Can Louis van Gaal cut it at Manchester United? Will Bayern conquer all in Germany? Is this PSG's year to win the Champions League?
August 7, 2014 -- Updated 1012 GMT (1812 HKT)
It's been a difficult year for Barcelona on and off the pitch, and the signing of Luis Suarez has only increased the prospect of more controversy.
August 11, 2014 -- Updated 1435 GMT (2235 HKT)
Germany striker Miroslav Klose, who scored a total of 16 goals at four World Cup finals, has announced his retirement from international football.
July 31, 2014 -- Updated 1145 GMT (1945 HKT)
When celebrating an important anniversary, it's always good to look your best. At least that's theory for a Spanish football team's preseason tuxedo kit.
July 30, 2014 -- Updated 1103 GMT (1903 HKT)
While many top European clubs are targeting the U.S. market, French football is setting its sights on expanding into Asia -- with China playing a key role.
July 27, 2014 -- Updated 1229 GMT (2029 HKT)
Major League Soccer has snared another big name from England with former Chelsea star Frank Lampard committing his future to New York City FC.
July 23, 2014 -- Updated 1656 GMT (0056 HKT)
Europe's top clubs have booked a summer holiday to the U.S. -- but this is business not pleasure as they look to cash in on the World Cup afterglow.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1828 GMT (0228 HKT)
Former World Cup-winning captain Dunga is appointed coach of Brazil's national team for the second time, charged with restoring national pride.
July 22, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
Colombia's World Cup star James Rodriguez continues Real Madrid's long tradition of signing "Galacticos."
July 21, 2014 -- Updated 1007 GMT (1807 HKT)
Germany's World Cup-winning captain Philipp Lahm has decided to go out at the top by announcing his retirement from international football.
Today's five most popular stories