Middlesbrough striker Scott McDonald pleased to be back in the team

Scott McDonald: Back in the first-team fold at Boro

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Australian striker Scott McDonald is delighted to be back involved in the first team at Middlesbrough.

The 29-year-old has been frozen out of Tony Mowbray's plans so far this season, but he returned to score the winner in the weekend win at Watford.

McDonald admits he is pleased just to be involved again.

"You're a footballer first and you want to play football, so to get back out there and help the team get a win was a great feeling and I'm happy the gaffer has given me the opportunity," he told the club's website.

"I've just been getting my head down and working hard. Everything's been sorted out and we move on and get on with it, so let's talk about the football!

"Me and the gaffer know what happened and that's the way it will stay."

McDonald came off the bench to play on the left, an unusual role for the forward, but he was happy to help out.

"We have a few injuries and we had three or four attackers on the bench so it was a hard one to on the pick who would go on," he said.

"But the gaffer gave me the nod to come on and asked me to play on the left and I was happy to do a job for the team. I played there last year so it wasn't a big issue for me. The gaffer had trust in me and that's important.

"I was happy playing out there, especially when the man got sent off because then you can pick holes. That suited me even more. If it had been 11 v 11 I would have been up and down and it would have been a bit harder for me."


Mowbray insists McDonald will continue to get chances if he plays well.

Mowbray said: "The bottom line is Scott will score goals if you give him chances and yet there will be days when he doesn't play very well and he has to accept the fact that his number will go up and he has to go off or he has to sit on the bench because I think another combination for forwards will be best.

"He has to accept that and get on with it and I'm sure he will.

"I want everybody to want Middlesbrough to win every game whether they are in the team or not in the team and Scott has showed those qualities over the last few weeks and that's why he's involved.

"And if he keeps scoring goals there's a fair chance he'll get minutes on the pitch."