Doncaster striker Billy Sharp has called his goal against Middlesbrough the 'most important' of his career as it came only days after the death of his newborn son.
Sharp played in Doncaster's 3-1 Championship defeat to Middlesbrough on Tuesday night, hours after the club had announced the news that Luey Jacob Sharp had died on Saturday aged just two days old. The crowd commemorated the infant's life with a minute's applause before kick-off and Sharp sent them into raptures with an outstanding volley after 14 minutes.
In the early hours of Wednesday morning, Sharp used his Twitter account to thank fans of both teams for the pre-match tribute, and to describe some of the emotions he had felt. He wrote: "My goal tonight was the most important goal of my career dedicated to my brave boy luey jacob sharp I love u son sleep tight.thatsforyouson."
He added: "To captain the side tonite was an honour and a pleasure,the minute applause I was crying meant so much to me thanks to both sets of fans.
"My goal had to be something special tonight for my special boy. I'm so proud of him, and his mum @jadecarlie86."
Sharp's girlfriend Jade Fair also sent the following tweet: "@billysharp10 & I are grateful for the love and support we have received. Daddy did Luey proud tonight.Sleep tight angel."
Both managers praised Sharp's attitude, with Middlesbrough boss Tony Mowbray saying: "For him to score a wonder-goal, your headlines should be there really - a goal from heaven."
After scoring, Sharp lifted his Doncaster shirt to reveal a t-shirt which read: "That's for you, son", and referee Darren Deadman was praised for not issuing the standard yellow card for such a celebration.