Xisco Munoz has praised Nathaniel Chalobah for overcoming illness to play in Watford's 2-1 win over Derby County on Friday night.

The midfielder had been suffering with illness all day, but recovered in time to play his part in the victory, setting up what turned out to be the winning goal with a clever backheel to Will Hughes.

Ahead of tomorrow night's trip to face Blackburn Rovers, the head coach thanked Chalobah and said his perseverance was indicative of the club's desire to keep winning.

"The last game on Friday Chalobah was all day sick and after he was in the game and he played excellently," said Munoz. "I think everybody wants to give one plus more for the team and I think I have a very good squad and everybody is ready, and is waiting for the moment to give their best for our team.

Picture: PA

Picture: PA

"I want to say thank you because he was sick and gave his maximum for the squad."

Chalobah was substituted midway through the second half leading to some suggestions that Munoz was wary of him picking up a yellow card that would rule him out with a suspension.

However, the head coach said that was not the case and his substitution was purely down the player's illness.

"When are thinking only in the game," he added. "The most important for Chalobah was he was sick all day and until the last moment, we didn't know if he could play or not."

One player who does not look like returning any time soon is Troy Deeney, who Munoz does not yet have a return date for, after a scan revealed the number nine had suffered achilles tendon damage.

However, the head coach still feels his "capitano" has something to offer.

"Right now, I want all the best for him," said Munoz. "Troy is Troy and I don't know exactly what is his recovery time. We are working with him for a short time and after we will see what is his recovery. The most important with Troy is he is the capitano inside and outside the pitch.

"I want him to come back faster, but we will see what happens."