Andre Villas-Boas believes Gareth Bale is getting an unfair reputation as a diver after the winger was booked for the second time in two games for simulation.

Bale flung himself to the deck as Steve Sidwell slid in late during Spurs 3-0 win over Fulham, though replays suggested he made contact with the Welshman.

Villas-Boas said: “It’s difficult. He is so fast it is difficult to judge situations but Bale has suffered big injuries to his ankles before and sometimes he wants to protect himself a little bit.

“He might put his body in situations where the ref thinks he is diving and he is suffering from it in these last two games. He’s now very near suspension for two unfair yellow cards.

“I think you gain a reputation of being a diver, sometimes unfairly. This player has suffered a lot in his career and it is a little bit harsh on him but it is no critique on Chris (Foy’s) decision because it is a difficult decision to take.”

Bale limped off in the second half with a hamstring injury and the Spurs boss expects it will keep him out for up to two weeks.

Dawson though could return sooner after being substituted for a similar injury in the first half.

Jermain Defoe scored twice in quick succession after Sandro had given Tottenham the lead in the second half and Villas-Boas was full of praise for the England striker, who this week said he wanted to finish his career at Tottenham.

Villas-Boas said: “Whenever you need strikers, Jermain is there for you. Sometimes strikers might look distant from the game but when the team sets them up it’s important to have that clinical touch and he just has it.

“He’s having an amazing season with us right now, he’s extremely motivated, playing lots of games and it is good to see him happy.”

The result takes Spurs up to fourth place, level on points with third placed Chelsea, and comes on the back of wins against West Ham and Liverpool in the past seven days.

Villas-Boas said: “We’ve had a very good week following on from the Lazio draw which was an extremely good result for us and there is so many individuals you want to touch on that have been excellent – Sandro, Lennon, people who’ve given their heart for the team and their setting a new standard this season which is good to see.

“Lennon has been absolutely amazing. Not only has he found the back of the net recently and also his defensive work was extreme and Sandro is such an important player for us.

“It obviously it doesn’t stop here, we need to continue with the same momentum, it is important for the club, the players and the fans.”