Spurs started the match in confident fashion but the hosts found it difficult to create early chances against Basel's stubborn defence.
The hosts responded well to a spell of Basel domination, with Gareth Bale drilling the ball just wide following good work from Lewis Holtby.
Andre Villas-Boas was forced into making an early substitution when Aaron Lennon limped off the field and Basel piled on the misery just moments later as Valentin Stocker slotted the ball into the back of the net after Streller had drilled his effort against the post.
Basel doubled their advantage five minutes later when Spurs failed to defend a corner, leaving Fabian Frei to head past the helpless Friedel.
However, the home side were able to reduce the deficit five minutes before the break as Emmanuel Adebayor capitalised on some nervy defending to volley home from close range.
Scott Parker should have equalised on the stroke of half time but the midfielder failed to hit the target from only six yards out.