Goals from Almen Abdi, Ikechi Anya and Troy Deeney give Watford first win against Leeds United at Vicarage Road since 1992

Hornets' long wait for home win against Leeds is over

Hornets' long wait for home win against Leeds is over

First published in Latest Sport
Last updated

It’s taken 22 years but Watford are at last able to celebrate a home win over Leeds United after a comfortable 3-0 victory tonight once again rekindled hopes of a late charge for the play-offs.

Having been named in the starting line-up for the first time in more than seven months, Almen Abdi got the Hornets off to their latest flying start in the ninth minute when he headed home an Ikechi Anya cross.

This settled the Hornets down and they continued to be comfortable before doubling their lead in the 32nd minute when Anya turned goalscorer, this time heading in a Faraoni cross.

Leeds offered some more urgency at the start of the second half but the Hornets made sure of a sixth home win in eight unbeaten league games at Vicarage Road when some awful defending from the visitors allowed Troy Deeney to continue his hot streak with the third.

But for a brilliant save from Jack Butland, Deeney would have netted a fourth on the counter-attack but Watford were able to celebrate a first win over the Whites at Vicarage Road since the famous League Cup success over the then English champions in 1992.

The win, coupled with results elsewhere, means the gap to the play-offs is back to seven points with a game in hand. The quest to finish sixth remains a tall order and Watford have to keep on winning, but such is the form of the majority of the teams also trying to achieve the final play-off spot it cannot be ruled out.

Having chosen to leave his line-up largely unchanged for Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Burnley, Beppe Sannino opted to make four changes and all were in midfield.

Undoubtedly the biggest positive was the full return of Abdi, who made his first start since the end of August following his season-long battle with a foot problem. Sean Murray was also back in the starting line-up, as was Faraoni while Albert Riera made his full debut at left-wing back. This meant Anya was back up front, as Lewis McGugan, Mathias Ranegie and Daniel Pudil dropped to the bench while Cristian Battocchio was absent with the serious-looking knee injury he sustained against the Clarets.

Fresh from the news that Massimo Cellino’s takeover of the club had gone through, embattled Leeds boss Brian McDermott made two changes to the side that lost a seventh game in eight at Wigan Athletic at the weekend.

Sam Byram was out through injury while Matt Smith dropped to the bench and their places were taken by Dominic Poleon and Alex Mowatt.

The game got off to a sedate start but the Hornets had the first glimpse of an opening in the fourth minute when Deeney tried to release Anya with a through ball. Although he was pulled back, it ran for Abdi who broke into the area before cutting it back into the middle where Faraoni’s goal-bound strike was blocked by Stephen Warnock.

But five minutes later the Hornets were once again celebrating an early goal – and this was one in particular to warm the hearts of Watford fans everywhere.

Abdi had already starting the game promisingly and he began the move that led to him scoring his first goal since the heartbreaking promotion-denying reverse against the same opposition on the final day of last season, sweeping the ball forward to his left where Anya brought it down and took on and and beat Scott Wootton before crossing and there was the Swiss midfielder to head down and past Butland from the edge of the six-yard area to make it 1-0.

The Hornets continued to look confident, mixing the game up well, before they went into a phase of letting their opponents have most of the possession but not in areas where they could pose any real danger, although Ross McCormack did have a shot from around 20 yards out that was blocked.

Marco Cassetti received the game’s first yellow card in the 28th minute for a late challenge on Michael Tonge as the home side continued to look comfortable, without threatening too often to add to their advantage.

Leeds had their first shot on target in the 31st minute when McCormack tried to catch Manuel Almunia out with an audacious driven lob from all of 40 yards which the Hornets keeper were never troubled by. Within a minute, Sannino’s men were celebrating doubling their lead.

The hosts built down the left with Anya initially suggesting he would cross before feeding the overlapping Riera. His deep centre was recycled to Faraoni on the right side of the area and his cross picked out the head of Anya, who headed down and inside Butland’s near post to make it 2-0 on the night of his 50th start for the Vicarage Road club.

The game then reverted to how it been unfolding before; the visitors having the majority of the possession against a confident Watford side content to keep them at arm’s length and looking to try and exploit any opportunities that came their way as they finished the opening half two goals to the good.

There was no great surprise that McDermott made a change at the start of the second period as Cameron Stewart replaced Mowatt and within 50 seconds of the restart the visitors were offering more of a threat as Poleon cut in off the right before feeding Noel Hunt, who fired wide of Almunia’s near post with an angled drive.

Wotton was booked for a foul on Anya in the 49th minute and soon after Daniel Tozser, who was having another composed game in the heart of midfield, let fly with a 25-yard left-footed piledriver that wasn’t too far off target.

A lapse from Abdi then gave Hunt the opportunity to run at the right side of the Watford defence. He was held up by Gabriele Angella but laid the ball back to Stewart before coming inside but his low right-footed shot was comfortably held by Almunia.

Hunt was booked in the 60th minute but he was very fortunate not to see red after kicking out at Faraoni, who had knocked the ball out of play to enable McCormack to receive treatment as he was lying on the ground on the other side of the pitch beneath the new East Stand.

But any hope Leeds had of a comeback were ended in the 66th minute when they made a complete mess of trying to clear their lines at the back and after the ball fell for Deeney thanks to Abdi’s tenacity, the striker bundled his way past the hapless Wootton before smashing a close-range effort into the roof of the net for goal 22 of his season and his eighth in as many games.

McDermott immediately made a second change as Smith came on for Hunt but there was then a relatively quiet period of play before the next opportunity arose for either side when Almunia had to drop low to his right to keep out an angled Poleon drive. After Watford had regained possession, they broke at speed as Abdi sent Anya racing away on the right, he knocked a first-time ball across the area to Deeney who looked odds-on to net a fourth but was denied by a superb reaction stop by Butland by his near post.

McCormack was replaced by Andy White with nine minutes remaining before Abdi was rightly afforded a standing ovation when he made way for McGugan while Pudil came on for Riera.

McGugan was soon involved in the action, cutting back on his left foot on the right side of the area before hitting a stinging drive that was blocked away before Sannino made his final change as Alexander Merkel came on for Murray for a Hornets side who made it from 20 points from the last available 24 at home.

Watford: Almunia; Angella, Cassetti, Ekstrand; Faraoni, Murray (Merkel 90), Tozser, Abdi (McGugan 85), Riera (Pudil 85); Anya, Deeney. Not used: Bond, Belkalem, Ranegie, Hoban.

Leeds United: Butland, Wootton, Lees, Pearce, Warnock; Brown, Mowatt (Stewart 46); McCormack (White 81), Tonge, Poleon; Hunt (Smith 66). Not used: Cairns, Zaliukas, Pugh, Murphy.

Bookings: Cassetti for a foul on Tonge (28); Wotton for a foul on Anya (49); Hunt for a foul on Faraoni (60); Deeney for over celebrating goal (67).

Attendance: 16,212 (1,789 away).

Referee: Gavin Ward.

Comments (20)

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10:07pm Tue 8 Apr 14

downunderorn says...

That is more like it! UORNNNNNS
That is more like it! UORNNNNNS downunderorn
  • Score: 15

10:12pm Tue 8 Apr 14

berkshire orn says...

Lets all have a party la la la la la lets all have a party la la la la uuuhhhhornssss
Lets all have a party la la la la la lets all have a party la la la la uuuhhhhornssss berkshire orn
  • Score: 7

10:15pm Tue 8 Apr 14

84AGAIN says...

How good was that to see Abdi getting back to his best and scoring into the bargain? I know it was Leeds and they are seriously bad at the moment but earlier in the season it was the strugglers who we're tripping us up. If nothing else it augers we'll for 2014-2015. We might just fill that new stand at this rate..........
How good was that to see Abdi getting back to his best and scoring into the bargain? I know it was Leeds and they are seriously bad at the moment but earlier in the season it was the strugglers who we're tripping us up. If nothing else it augers we'll for 2014-2015. We might just fill that new stand at this rate.......... 84AGAIN
  • Score: 43

10:39pm Tue 8 Apr 14

The Not-so-enlightened one says...

The timing of the goals was important tonight; an early one to settle the nerves, a second just when Leeds were getting the upper hand and the third to snuff out the momentum they were trying to build in the second half. Great to see Abdi back, even if he was a bit up and down (only to be expected after such a long lay off). Troy seems to be getting the little breaks that go your way when your on form and scoring - another night the ball would have ricocheted off him and out of play, rather than staying with him and ending up in the back of the net - it's turning into a really big season for him, 25+ a distinct possibility now. Looked pretty solid at the back, McCormack didn't really get a look in. Marco was very animated in organising things tonight. All in all, as mentioned above, it augers well for next season - a season long midfield containing Almen, the Kaiser and Albert anyone?
The timing of the goals was important tonight; an early one to settle the nerves, a second just when Leeds were getting the upper hand and the third to snuff out the momentum they were trying to build in the second half. Great to see Abdi back, even if he was a bit up and down (only to be expected after such a long lay off). Troy seems to be getting the little breaks that go your way when your on form and scoring - another night the ball would have ricocheted off him and out of play, rather than staying with him and ending up in the back of the net - it's turning into a really big season for him, 25+ a distinct possibility now. Looked pretty solid at the back, McCormack didn't really get a look in. Marco was very animated in organising things tonight. All in all, as mentioned above, it augers well for next season - a season long midfield containing Almen, the Kaiser and Albert anyone? The Not-so-enlightened one
  • Score: 23

10:41pm Tue 8 Apr 14

ralear49 says...

nice to see such a large attendance on a week night and with not much real hope of that late playoff challenge
nice to see such a large attendance on a week night and with not much real hope of that late playoff challenge ralear49
  • Score: 27

11:36pm Tue 8 Apr 14

Bush Hornet says...

Great team performance. Abdi's vision has been such a loss this season. We would undoubtedly be in the top 6, poss even top 2, if it weren't for his injury. Looking so much better as a team than we were.
Great team performance. Abdi's vision has been such a loss this season. We would undoubtedly be in the top 6, poss even top 2, if it weren't for his injury. Looking so much better as a team than we were. Bush Hornet
  • Score: 19

11:57pm Tue 8 Apr 14

WessexLad says...

Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back. WessexLad
  • Score: -33

12:04am Wed 9 Apr 14

grahamwfc says...

WessexLad wrote:
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
missed the yeovil game then
[quote][p][bold]WessexLad[/bold] wrote: Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.[/p][/quote]missed the yeovil game then grahamwfc
  • Score: 21

12:10am Wed 9 Apr 14

Horns24 says...

Bizzare comment above, yes the wing backs played negatively at times but that's just Saninno's way. Abdi was was playing it forward and helped create his own goal. Good to hear the "right side - left side' nonsense has stopped and Almunia get some appreciaton
Bizzare comment above, yes the wing backs played negatively at times but that's just Saninno's way. Abdi was was playing it forward and helped create his own goal. Good to hear the "right side - left side' nonsense has stopped and Almunia get some appreciaton Horns24
  • Score: 11

12:13am Wed 9 Apr 14

SuperHorn says...

Great game lads. Some moments where it lapsed but we played well. Good to see the 'Professor' back again and playing reasonably well. Hunt is an absolute moron for his tackle on Faraoni though considering he was already putting the ball out in favour of a Leeds player, should definitely have seen red
Great game lads. Some moments where it lapsed but we played well. Good to see the 'Professor' back again and playing reasonably well. Hunt is an absolute moron for his tackle on Faraoni though considering he was already putting the ball out in favour of a Leeds player, should definitely have seen red SuperHorn
  • Score: 18

8:45am Wed 9 Apr 14

demerit says...

berkshire orn wrote:
Lets all have a party la la la la la lets all have a party la la la la uuuhhhhornssss
Calm down dear, it's only a football match.
[quote][p][bold]berkshire orn[/bold] wrote: Lets all have a party la la la la la lets all have a party la la la la uuuhhhhornssss[/p][/quote]Calm down dear, it's only a football match. demerit
  • Score: -1

8:50am Wed 9 Apr 14

demerit says...

WessexLad wrote:
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
No you're not alone. We didn't play well. Leeds were crap though. But I don't think that this is why we won since we merely adapted to them and did what we had to do. It was like pin-ball at times with so many random passes. We played far better against Burnley and that game was better to watch too.
[quote][p][bold]WessexLad[/bold] wrote: Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.[/p][/quote]No you're not alone. We didn't play well. Leeds were crap though. But I don't think that this is why we won since we merely adapted to them and did what we had to do. It was like pin-ball at times with so many random passes. We played far better against Burnley and that game was better to watch too. demerit
  • Score: 4

8:55am Wed 9 Apr 14

Hornet Cornet says...

Nice result but I just so wish we'd got this result at the end of last season. The thought's of poor old Bonham's debut for the club will haunt me forever.

Onwards and upwards for next season's promotion push.

HC
Nice result but I just so wish we'd got this result at the end of last season. The thought's of poor old Bonham's debut for the club will haunt me forever. Onwards and upwards for next season's promotion push. HC Hornet Cornet
  • Score: 6

9:19am Wed 9 Apr 14

Goldenboy1960 says...

WessexLad wrote:
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result.

In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times.

In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit.

Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half.

As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter.

Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season.

I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes.

It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad.

So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends.
[quote][p][bold]WessexLad[/bold] wrote: Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.[/p][/quote]I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result. In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times. In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit. Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half. As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter. Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season. I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes. It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad. So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends. Goldenboy1960
  • Score: 13

9:41am Wed 9 Apr 14

grahamwfc says...

Goldenboy1960 wrote:
WessexLad wrote:
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result.

In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times.

In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit.

Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half.

As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter.

Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season.

I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes.

It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad.

So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends.
Excellent post
[quote][p][bold]Goldenboy1960[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]WessexLad[/bold] wrote: Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.[/p][/quote]I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result. In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times. In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit. Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half. As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter. Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season. I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes. It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad. So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends.[/p][/quote]Excellent post grahamwfc
  • Score: 0

9:46am Wed 9 Apr 14

grahamwfc says...

Keep hearing rumours of Troy and Fessi moving on, with Vydra and Danny Graham returning. Be nice to have all 4. WOW! Can someone send Danny a copy of the Atkins diet mind. I'd still like to see Di Natalie have a season in England with us rather than retiring. C'mon Pozzos convince him.
If certain players can tidy up on the sloppy passing we have the makings here of a VERY GOOD team
Keep hearing rumours of Troy and Fessi moving on, with Vydra and Danny Graham returning. Be nice to have all 4. WOW! Can someone send Danny a copy of the Atkins diet mind. I'd still like to see Di Natalie have a season in England with us rather than retiring. C'mon Pozzos convince him. If certain players can tidy up on the sloppy passing we have the makings here of a VERY GOOD team grahamwfc
  • Score: -1

9:57am Wed 9 Apr 14

stonehornet says...

Troy has now scored in the last 7 homes games running, must be close to another record?
Team for the last home win v.Leeds in that famous League Cup tie in '92 -
Sucking, Ashby, Drysdale, Dublin, Dvd Holdsworth, Hessenthaler, Lavin, Porter, Putney, Furlong, Nogan (Butler).
Troy has now scored in the last 7 homes games running, must be close to another record? Team for the last home win v.Leeds in that famous League Cup tie in '92 - Sucking, Ashby, Drysdale, Dublin, Dvd Holdsworth, Hessenthaler, Lavin, Porter, Putney, Furlong, Nogan (Butler). stonehornet
  • Score: 2

10:00am Wed 9 Apr 14

Dunderdale Pinner says...

Fully agree with Goldenboy . Close season will be interesting. My view is we have too large squad and make changes/substitution
s to keep players happy. The sides at the top have small settled squads. Next season let us have 26/28 reliable players. Over to you Mr. Nano.
Fully agree with Goldenboy . Close season will be interesting. My view is we have too large squad and make changes/substitution s to keep players happy. The sides at the top have small settled squads. Next season let us have 26/28 reliable players. Over to you Mr. Nano. Dunderdale Pinner
  • Score: 1

10:43am Wed 9 Apr 14

buck-stops says...

grahamwfc wrote:
Goldenboy1960 wrote:
WessexLad wrote:
Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield.

The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.
I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result.

In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times.

In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit.

Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half.

As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter.

Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season.

I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes.

It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad.

So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends.
Excellent post
We're allowed to dream....
[quote][p][bold]grahamwfc[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Goldenboy1960[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]WessexLad[/bold] wrote: Am I alone? Three very well taken goals, especially Deeney's out of the blue, but apart from that, the worst I have seen Watford play all season: head tennis, hospital passes and speculative punts upfield. The shame is that forwards were running into open space, but the preferred pass was always sideways or back.[/p][/quote]I half go with this view but I feel WessexLad rightly is not just looking at the result. For me it's just amazing how other people see it. You can play well and lose and play badly and nick a result. In the 1st half, Leeds played with a diamond formation. We were outnumbered in midfield 4 v 3 and struggled to control the game. I agree that our passing was poor at times and we kept turning the ball over far too easily. We played in too tight areas with risk and our decision making was poor at times. In the 2nd half Anya was dropped off into a 5-4-1 which meant we could compete in midfield. Leeds went to a 4-4-2 so it evened it up a bit. Reading the Leeds reports suggests they played badly. Well I don't think so in the 1st half, but I did feel they lost their way in the 2nd half. As always goals and winning makes people say brilliant or rubbish. Well my belief is that despite the result we were a mixed bag last night. Rushed and poor decision making at times, and yet at other times brilliant and exciting on the counter. Scoring goals wins games, and confidence rises. Positives are of course that we were clinical in our finishing where we have not been. Abdi absolutely made a difference. He has that extra quality and despite some mistakes from him and a few aaaahs around the ground when he gave the ball away, he gave a lift to the other players. He can only get better. He has been a massive loss this season. I still feel we are not quite right but the signs are that we are getting more belief as the style changes and the players are adapting. I believe we are still very much in the development mode as a team but the chances are hitting the back of the net now. What a difference that makes. It will be a huge summer for us, and Nani has to get this right for next season. The competitiveness in this league is growing and we need a bit more quality in the side, without totally overhauling the squad to ensure some continuity. That of course is not easy and we have to also look at meeting the FFP and the home grown rule. i.e. Any nationality has to have been at an English club for a minimum of 3 years before he is 21 to count as homegrown. A minimum of 6 in the match day squad. So we have an interesting last month. Great that despite still sitting exactly half way we are still on edge. I wouldn't like to predict how this season ends.[/p][/quote]Excellent post[/p][/quote]We're allowed to dream.... buck-stops
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10:08am Fri 11 Apr 14

ORBY says...

In previous seasons as soon as a forward hits 20+ goals he gets too big for his boots and moves on, only to find out that perhaps he should stayed where he was. I hope TD does not feel that way. If we get it right in the transfer dep't in the close season and sign players that are fit and can slot straight into our team, then the future looks bright!!
In previous seasons as soon as a forward hits 20+ goals he gets too big for his boots and moves on, only to find out that perhaps he should stayed where he was. I hope TD does not feel that way. If we get it right in the transfer dep't in the close season and sign players that are fit and can slot straight into our team, then the future looks bright!! ORBY
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