Matt celebrates 21st with a pair

Matt McClure scored twice days after his 21st birthday

Matt McClure scored twice days after his 21st birthday

First published in Sport Bucks Free Press: Photograph of the Author by , Senior reporter

MATCHWINNER Matt McClure had a belated birthday present with two goals against Rotherham on Tuesday night.

The striker turned 21 on Saturday and celebrated with a brace that turned the game at the New York Stadium on its head, as Blues twice came from behind to win 3-2.

He was a late substitute on his birthday and admitted he should have marked the occasion with a goal against Northampton - but his pair against the Millers made up for it.

The Northern Ireland U21 international said: "It was my first start back from injury. I was quite excited, I was really up for the game and needed to take my chance and make sure I play Saturday. Luckily I did it tonight."

His second, which won the game, came from a quickly-taken free-kick by Dean Morgan that left home defenders appealing for offside.

But McClure said: "I knew I was onside - they kept trying to call the offside but they were just too slow.

"The keeper made it a bit easier for me as he started coming and stopped halfway. I'd made my mind up, but I thought I'd put it wide. Luckily it crept in."

Manager Gareth Ainsworth was full of praise for the striker after the game, predicting him for big things.

He said: "I know the way I want to play and Matty can feature heavily in it.

"He's finished two great goals tonight. I'm really pleased with Matt McClure because he's stayed patient. He missed an England/Northern Ireland game, which was hard for him to take. He wanted to get his hamstring right for me and it's paid dividends.

"He'll be a good player."

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