Watford boss Beppe Sannino proud of players' courage and desire in FA Cup 4-2 defeat to Manchester City

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Watford boss Beppe Sannino says he is proud of his players' "daring and desire" despite the 4-2 defeat to Manchester City in the FA Cup fourth round.

The Hornets took a shock 2-0 lead into half-time thanks to goals from Fernando Forestieri and Troy Deeney and they held on to their advantage until the hour-mark.

However a Sergio Aguero hat-trick and Aleksander Kolarov's long-range effort saw City come back to prevent an upset and win 4-2.

"I am proud of my lads because today I saw my team play with a lot of passion," Sannino said after the game.

"At the start, the odds were completely against us. I told my players to enjoy the game today and to play with freedom on the pitch.

"And I have to pay compliments to my players for their daring, their desire and their organisation throughout the pitch. I am very happy about that."

The Italian admits at 2-0 he started to believe Watford could pull off a shock but he said he always expected City to improve in the second period and believes his players suffered from fatigue late on.

"At the end of the first half, I believed," Sannino said. "But I knew the game was not finished and we needed to get through 90 minutes and more.

"In the second half, Manchester City were unbelievable – they were fantastic and they showed us their full strength.

"In their last 20 minutes we were lacking a bit physically because we had been so brilliant up until that moment."

Sannino made three changes in the second half, bringing on Marco Cassetti, Almen Abdi and Diego Fabbrini as he looked to help his team hold on to their lead.

The Hornets head coach insists however that ultimately it was impossible to resist City's dominance.

"I was aware of the kind of second half that we needed to have," he said.

"I spoke with my boys and I tried to make some changes to get some more quality and substance into midfield.

"I tried to change the situation but you saw the result – the quality of Manchester city in my opinion overcomes any changes you can make tactically."

Sannino rested first-choice goalkeeper Manuel Almunia for the match and instead picked young stopper Jonathan Bond.

Bond was at fault for the third goal, letting Kolarov's long-range shot slip through his fingers but Sannino stood up for his player.

"Jonathan Bond is fine," he added. "I think he has to remember this day not for the mistake but because he was very good on the pitch today - mistakes can happen."

 

 

Comments (10)

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6:42pm Sat 25 Jan 14

The BestTrip2011 says...

On the train on way back. Am voiceless. So proud of that team. Gave their all and held off City for over 70 minutes. Whatever happens this season, we know that they want to play for Beppe!
On the train on way back. Am voiceless. So proud of that team. Gave their all and held off City for over 70 minutes. Whatever happens this season, we know that they want to play for Beppe! The BestTrip2011
  • Score: 35

6:43pm Sat 25 Jan 14

Surbiton says...

We did a lot better than many premiership teams and gave them one hell of a fright in the first half. Yes we were beaten by quality in the end but considering the difference in players our team did us proud. Let's get on with the league and aim for a top six finish and push on next year.
We did a lot better than many premiership teams and gave them one hell of a fright in the first half. Yes we were beaten by quality in the end but considering the difference in players our team did us proud. Let's get on with the league and aim for a top six finish and push on next year. Surbiton
  • Score: 26

7:03pm Sat 25 Jan 14

Stoney77 says...

To be honest, if you are going to pull off a mighty cup upset, the higher placed league team need to have a proper off day for 90 minutes and the lower league team playing out of their skins for 90 mins and need to have a bit of luck with posts and crossbars getting in the way etc. City turned it on and had a great second half by all accounts and their unquestionable quality brought them home in the end. Aguero is up there fighting with Suarez as to the mantel of worlds 3rd best player. Our lads did us proud to fight for so long. COYH. Fair play to all that went, a day out to remember.
To be honest, if you are going to pull off a mighty cup upset, the higher placed league team need to have a proper off day for 90 minutes and the lower league team playing out of their skins for 90 mins and need to have a bit of luck with posts and crossbars getting in the way etc. City turned it on and had a great second half by all accounts and their unquestionable quality brought them home in the end. Aguero is up there fighting with Suarez as to the mantel of worlds 3rd best player. Our lads did us proud to fight for so long. COYH. Fair play to all that went, a day out to remember. Stoney77
  • Score: 9

8:30pm Sat 25 Jan 14

BlueMancunian says...

A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way
Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today
The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half
The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters
Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan
A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan BlueMancunian
  • Score: 85

10:02pm Sat 25 Jan 14

Hornet Cornet says...

BlueMancunian wrote:
A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan
How humble is the posting by BlueMancunian? I applaud you for your honesty and humility and it proves undoubtedly that the city of Manchester has only one proper team in it with proper supporters.

Man City, I salute you (shame we didn't win though).

HC
[quote][p][bold]BlueMancunian[/bold] wrote: A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan[/p][/quote]How humble is the posting by BlueMancunian? I applaud you for your honesty and humility and it proves undoubtedly that the city of Manchester has only one proper team in it with proper supporters. Man City, I salute you (shame we didn't win though). HC Hornet Cornet
  • Score: 14

10:50pm Sat 25 Jan 14

jasonwatford says...

BlueMancunian wrote:
A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way
Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today
The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half
The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters
Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan
Thank you - Maybe a lesson to some of your players and manager that you cant just turn up to win. Soon as you got 1 with 30mins to go we knew we were doomed but we had already decided it was a day out to watch quality players and we would have been as loud if we had been beaten 6-0
[quote][p][bold]BlueMancunian[/bold] wrote: A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan[/p][/quote]Thank you - Maybe a lesson to some of your players and manager that you cant just turn up to win. Soon as you got 1 with 30mins to go we knew we were doomed but we had already decided it was a day out to watch quality players and we would have been as loud if we had been beaten 6-0 jasonwatford
  • Score: 3

10:57pm Sat 25 Jan 14

Man from Pinner says...

Great performance. Best bit was we took the game to City in the first half and didn't just sit back and defend. Well worth the half time lead. Just run out of fuel.
The season should kick on now.
To all at Watford FC; Thanks for a great day out.
Great performance. Best bit was we took the game to City in the first half and didn't just sit back and defend. Well worth the half time lead. Just run out of fuel. The season should kick on now. To all at Watford FC; Thanks for a great day out. Man from Pinner
  • Score: 8

11:32pm Sat 25 Jan 14

matey_from_brighton says...

BlueMancunian wrote:
A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way
Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today
The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half
The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters
Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan
Thank you BlueMan, for taking the time to comment and praise us. Look forward to playing you in the cup again next year!
[quote][p][bold]BlueMancunian[/bold] wrote: A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan[/p][/quote]Thank you BlueMan, for taking the time to comment and praise us. Look forward to playing you in the cup again next year! matey_from_brighton
  • Score: 5

5:40am Sun 26 Jan 14

SAHornet says...

matey_from_brighton wrote:
BlueMancunian wrote:
A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way
Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today
The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half
The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters
Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan
Thank you BlueMan, for taking the time to comment and praise us. Look forward to playing you in the cup again next year!
Cup? Don't you mean The Prem ? :-)
[quote][p][bold]matey_from_brighton[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BlueMancunian[/bold] wrote: A very uncomfortable afternoon and although the Watford manager feels that City's class shone through in the end, I can assure you that from a City fans point of view, it didn't feel that way Very very relieved to get through and can't believe that Watford had only won one in.14 before today The Watford team were magnificent in the first half and still made life difficult for us in the second half The noise from the Watford fans was enormous and congratulations to the travelling supporters Good luck for the rest of the season from a very relieved City fan[/p][/quote]Thank you BlueMan, for taking the time to comment and praise us. Look forward to playing you in the cup again next year![/p][/quote]Cup? Don't you mean The Prem ? :-) SAHornet
  • Score: 8

2:07pm Mon 27 Jan 14

solefull says...

Well done lads, proud to be a Watford fan.
Well done lads, proud to be a Watford fan. solefull
  • Score: 1

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