Troy Deeney is “the spirit” of the Watford team, according to head coach Javi Gracia.

Yesterday’s 2-1 defeat of Tottenham Hotspur saw Deeney score his second goal of the season as he inspired the Hornets to come from behind and extend their perfect record this term.

Gracia has been quick to praise the forward this season and was once again delighted with the manner of Deeney’s display against Spurs.

“He is the captain, he is the spirit and you can see he always tries to set an example and help everyone,” Gracia said of the 30-year-old’s performance.

“Today he has been very important and not only in scoring a goal. I said many times it is not only when the strikers score goals that they are important for us. They work during all the minutes and help us score goals.”

Deeney’s strong start to the campaign has come on the back of a pre-season in which he admitted to working hard to reach better fitness levels.

The striker has also been using a psychologist and nutritionist and says he has rediscovered his love of football this season.

While Deeney himself says a change of approach has informed his early season form, Gracia insists he has never doubted his commitment.

The Spaniard said: “I arrived in January and from the first day he has hasn’t changed. He always wants to win, works a lot and tries to be a good example for the rest of the players as captain.”