Clayton Donaldson was the hero for Birmingham City on Tuesday night, as the striker scored twice to knock Watford off the top of the Championship table with a 2-1 win and maintain Gary Rowett’s unbeaten start at the helm.
Donaldson turned in Stephen Gleeson's pass with a deflected shot to put the home side ahead after 80 seconds, before Fernando Forestieri equalised for Watford just five minutes later.
The game stayed level until the final five minutes, when the 30-year-old front man headed in a cross from David Cotterill to seal Birmingham’s second win in 26 home league games.
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Rowett, who began his reign with a 0-0 draw at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday, was full of praise for his match-winner at the final whistle, revealing that he wasn’t even at full fitness.
‘He blocked a free-kick on Saturday and just opened up his knee a little bit. He trained yesterday but was a little short [on fitness],’ he told the club’s official website.
‘You just wondered with him, and the other members of the team, whether they could go again after a local derby. I know Watford made five changes but I wanted to give my players the opportunity to go again to see how they could handle it at home.
‘And I think what we learned is that they can cope with that really well and Clayton played a pivotal role. He’s such a willing runner and willing worker and I thought he was excellent and really deserved his two goals.’
Supporters were certainly pleased with Donaldson’s contribution on the night, and many took to Twitter to express their delight after the club made another big step towards edging out of the drop zone.
Fantastic to see Clayton Donaldson finally get some praise, people don't realise the shift he puts in, defenders must hate him. #bcfc— Rob Edwin (@Robert_Bcfc) November 5, 2014
Fair play to Donaldson was class tonight even without his goals first game he's played well all round and hope it continues #bcfc— Aidan Peaty (@PeatyBcfc) November 4, 2014
What a great result and performance, every player played their part! Glesson, Shinnie shone. Donaldson held the ball up wel! YESSSSS!! #bcfc— Matthew Jewsbury (@MattJewsburyKRO) November 4, 2014
Also, let's hope the goals will give Clayton Donaldson that confidence boost. He could be a big player for us #bcfc— mark mccausland (@MarkMcc1875) November 4, 2014