Southgate told the Evening Gazette: “George was really up for it on Saturday and you could see the impact he had on our performance.
“He has been criticised this season and I can understand why.
“But when I see his desire to do well, as well as the knocks he has been carrying, then his leadership takes on a different aspect.
“All those things are the sign of a winner. I know that George has always been giving his best and I almost had to physically drag him off the field against Liverpool last week.
“On Saturday he was back to his best and that’s great to see.”