Roy Hodgson heaped praise on Fulham’s matchwinner Bobby Zamora after he curled home a last-gasp free-kick to break Birmingham hearts at Craven Cottage this afternoon.

The clamour for Zamora, who has now scored 15 goals in 32 starts this season, to gain an England call-up is growing but Hodgson’s delighted with the performances of a player who endured a testing first season at Fulham last year.

He’s always been a great target player and when he was younger he scored all the goals for Brighton and I think that’s why he got signed by the bigger clubs Tottenham and West Ham. “Last year he did a fantastic job for us alongside Andy Johnson and Andy was the one who was getting more of the goals.

This year he’s taken on the responsibility of being more than a target player and also been one of the main providers. I think he’s also top of our assists lists and he’s also taken on the role of goalscorer responsibility as well. You won’t see two better goals at Craven Cottage this year than the two that got us this victory today.

Hodgson said he was ‘truly delighted’ with Fulham’s application and their spirit to bounce back from the early setback of Chris Baird’s own goal after three minutes.

We got off to the worst possible start with the own goal but I thought after that the team rallied well and we played some really good football in the first half. Birmingham were well organised and resolute, we were unable to break them down and I was concerned as the game went on the fatigue factor would set in more and more and we’d feel the repercussions from Thursday night more and more.

So I was truly delighted when first Damien scored his wonder goal and Bobby managed to get another wonder goal – that’s two fantastic strikes in one week – and win us the game. I thought we were good value for the victory, during the 90 minutes we had the better of the play and the more opportunities.

I’ve got great respect for Birmingham – they’re a very good football team and it was a great victory against them.