What must the Watford players have been thinking as they watched Heidar Helguson's induction into the Hall of Fame?

Heidar Helguson celebrates on his return to Watford in 2009. Picture: Holly Cant

Heidar Helguson celebrates on his return to Watford in 2009. Picture: Holly Cant

First published in Latest Sport This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Deputy Group Sports Editor

As I watched the video paying tribute to this year’s inductee into Watford’s Hall of Fame, Heidar Helguson, I could see the current Hornets squad out of the corner of my eye. And as the likes of Ray Lewington and Neil Cox discussed Helguson’s impeccable desire and professionalism, I was left wondering what the current squad were thinking.

There was something symbolic about it.

How must the players who performed so badly the day before be feeling as they heard some of the finest gentlemen in Watford’s history talk about a player who summed up what the club has been about historically. The fact Tommy Mooney and Luther Blissett were also in the room at the time just emphasised the point even more.

Lewington explained how he once had to inform Helguson the club did not have enough money to offer him a new contract and the response summed up the striker; as long as his manager was happy then he was not worried about the money. He was happy to stay.

Hornets’ fans have been blessed to watch some exceptional football at times in the last two seasons. But possession-based or dynamic football is nothing without commitment and work-rate. That was seemingly forgotten on Saturday.

It is important to make clear that I like the Watford players as individuals and the starting XI during the 4-1 debacle against Huddersfield Town appear to be good people: players whose passion and commitment could rarely be questioned in the past. It made the weekend’s performance all the more confusing.

After three horrendous displays on the bounce, I was intrigued to see what the morale was like at the end of season awards on Sunday night – from the players, staff and supporters.

In the end, it was another enjoyable evening and the winners of the respective awards helped.

Troy Deeney’s passion could rarely be questioned and he picked up the Watford Observer’s Player of the Season trophy and also the award from his team-mates.

The community ambassador award, which included a heart-warming video, went to another committed player in Cristian Battocchio and likewise for the young player crown, which went to Sean Murray.

Club historian Trefor Jones was also a worthy recipient for the fan of the season gong, presented by the Watford Observer’s own Oli Phillips.

There were a few sniggers when the team performance of the season video was aired. For the record, Beppe Sannino voted for the 4-1 victory at Sheffield Wednesday as it ended the Golden Boys’ horrific winless run away from home. Goal of the season went to Gabriele Angella for his audacious flick at Nottingham Forest.

I wasn’t at last year’s awards due to a family illness but in the last two seasons the players have sat on their own tables rather than having two sitting on each guest table. The change was understandable due to the language barrier with several players but it does diminish the event slightly. I hope that tradition will return in the future. Clapping the players into the room individually was also a bit much after a season when the team underperformed.

Watford fan and comedian Stuart Holdham presented the awards for the first time and was the right side of uncomfortable with his jokes.

One of the funniest moments of the evening came when a game based around predicting if Watford players would score penalties ended with four fans and then Lloyd Doyley trying to eat a biscuit which started off balanced on their foreheads. None succeeded but Doyley continues to endear himself to supporters as he joined the stage at the first time of being asked and left with giant Hornets underpants on.

The word humbled was mentioned in both of Deeney’s thank you speeches and he also thanked ex-Walsall team-mate Mooney for his “schooling”.

Manuel Almunia accepted the players were not proud of their season and Beppe Sannino delivered a speech in English, which included an apology to the fans and ended it with “I love you”.

As is always the case, nearly all of the players left once the formal part of the evening ended but Deeney stuck around and continued to sign autographs and have pictures taken late into the night.

Comments (12)

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8:24am Fri 9 May 14

CEA_75 says...

Two top men, Helguson and Deeney. Never knew that about Helguson, just goes to show what a gent he is.
Two top men, Helguson and Deeney. Never knew that about Helguson, just goes to show what a gent he is. CEA_75
  • Score: 27

8:31am Fri 9 May 14

akureyri says...

Heiðar is a legend.
Heiðar is a legend. akureyri
  • Score: 27

8:49am Fri 9 May 14

VOReason says...

Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ...

This one,
Vydras agent
16 year old to udinese
Management and players fall out
Game means little consequences huge ...

Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash
Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ... This one, Vydras agent 16 year old to udinese Management and players fall out Game means little consequences huge ... Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash VOReason
  • Score: -13

8:51am Fri 9 May 14

CEA_75 says...

Two top men, Helguson and Deeney. What a partnership they'd have formed up front. Never knew that about Helguson, just goes to show what a gent he is.
Two top men, Helguson and Deeney. What a partnership they'd have formed up front. Never knew that about Helguson, just goes to show what a gent he is. CEA_75
  • Score: 12

9:08am Fri 9 May 14

mellow yellow says...

VOReason wrote:
Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ...

This one,
Vydras agent
16 year old to udinese
Management and players fall out
Game means little consequences huge ...

Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash
Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.
[quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ... This one, Vydras agent 16 year old to udinese Management and players fall out Game means little consequences huge ... Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash[/p][/quote]Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline. mellow yellow
  • Score: 18

9:10am Fri 9 May 14

garston tony says...

HH is an absolute legend
HH is an absolute legend garston tony
  • Score: 22

10:11am Fri 9 May 14

VOReason says...

mellow yellow wrote:
VOReason wrote:
Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ...

This one,
Vydras agent
16 year old to udinese
Management and players fall out
Game means little consequences huge ...

Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash
Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.
And this article? Pure emotive speculation ...
[quote][p][bold]mellow yellow[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ... This one, Vydras agent 16 year old to udinese Management and players fall out Game means little consequences huge ... Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash[/p][/quote]Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.[/p][/quote]And this article? Pure emotive speculation ... VOReason
  • Score: -2

10:17am Fri 9 May 14

northofwatfordpete says...

Deeney on his way then!
Deeney on his way then! northofwatfordpete
  • Score: -8

12:17pm Fri 9 May 14

mellow yellow says...

VOReason wrote:
mellow yellow wrote:
VOReason wrote:
Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ...

This one,
Vydras agent
16 year old to udinese
Management and players fall out
Game means little consequences huge ...

Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash
Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.
And this article? Pure emotive speculation ...
If emotive speculation bothers you, then you are following the wrong sport. Newspapers and the web devote way more time to rumours, bust-ups and ins and outs than they ever do to actual match reports. Or have you not noticed that? However, I don't see that the Wobby is guilty of that in this case, and Frank Smith has recently been writing a lot of decent, balanced stuff. Not sure what you are so agitated about....
[quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]mellow yellow[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ... This one, Vydras agent 16 year old to udinese Management and players fall out Game means little consequences huge ... Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash[/p][/quote]Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.[/p][/quote]And this article? Pure emotive speculation ...[/p][/quote]If emotive speculation bothers you, then you are following the wrong sport. Newspapers and the web devote way more time to rumours, bust-ups and ins and outs than they ever do to actual match reports. Or have you not noticed that? However, I don't see that the Wobby is guilty of that in this case, and Frank Smith has recently been writing a lot of decent, balanced stuff. Not sure what you are so agitated about.... mellow yellow
  • Score: 13

12:31pm Fri 9 May 14

Drewoneone says...

I sponsored Heidar's training kit under the Club's scheme soon after he joined the Hornets. As part of the sponsorship scheme we were invited to a "meet the players" night and were joined on our table by the player we sponsored. When Heidar came to our table he introduced himself in virtually perfect English and was an absolute gent the whole evening. He was very young and new to our country and sat with about a dozen people he didn't know - it must have been petrifying! He took the time to answer all our questions and was a credit to the Club.

Heidar is truly a Hornet legend - I'll never forget his bullet headers and wondered how he managed to jump so high, often beating defenders 4 or 5 inches taller than him.

I'm off to Iceland next year and will take my photo of me and Heidar from that night - hopefully I'll get some free drinks from the locals!!
I sponsored Heidar's training kit under the Club's scheme soon after he joined the Hornets. As part of the sponsorship scheme we were invited to a "meet the players" night and were joined on our table by the player we sponsored. When Heidar came to our table he introduced himself in virtually perfect English and was an absolute gent the whole evening. He was very young and new to our country and sat with about a dozen people he didn't know - it must have been petrifying! He took the time to answer all our questions and was a credit to the Club. Heidar is truly a Hornet legend - I'll never forget his bullet headers and wondered how he managed to jump so high, often beating defenders 4 or 5 inches taller than him. I'm off to Iceland next year and will take my photo of me and Heidar from that night - hopefully I'll get some free drinks from the locals!! Drewoneone
  • Score: 22

1:16pm Fri 9 May 14

Paul Gadd says...

H, Luther, Mooney...........all in the same room??!!
Did this thing take place in heaven?
H, Luther, Mooney...........all in the same room??!! Did this thing take place in heaven? Paul Gadd
  • Score: 9

1:45pm Fri 9 May 14

VOReason says...

mellow yellow wrote:
VOReason wrote:
mellow yellow wrote:
VOReason wrote:
Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ...

This one,
Vydras agent
16 year old to udinese
Management and players fall out
Game means little consequences huge ...

Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash
Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.
And this article? Pure emotive speculation ...
If emotive speculation bothers you, then you are following the wrong sport. Newspapers and the web devote way more time to rumours, bust-ups and ins and outs than they ever do to actual match reports. Or have you not noticed that? However, I don't see that the Wobby is guilty of that in this case, and Frank Smith has recently been writing a lot of decent, balanced stuff. Not sure what you are so agitated about....
This article takes the gloss off of a well deserved award for HH by turning it round to be a dig at our current squad.

I'm pretty sure there were some under performing players accused of being mercenaries in Heidars' day and his shining example hardly inspired them to better performances.

Smith is a second rate journalist with nothing better to write about, who are you, his sister????
[quote][p][bold]mellow yellow[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]mellow yellow[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]VOReason[/bold] wrote: Recent articles makes me think watford observer is trying to stir up a hornets nest, excuse the pun ... This one, Vydras agent 16 year old to udinese Management and players fall out Game means little consequences huge ... Club needs everyone's unity and support including the local paper .... Look at the consequences at forest and Newcastle when club and local papers clash[/p][/quote]Or, alternatively, they are reporting what is actually going on, and gauging fans reaction to such news. Can't see they have any reason for stirring anything up, and they could hardly have written a positive match report from the last game! The bust up news was out there before the wobby article, the Tozser one is positive, and the Vydra one is based on clear thinking. The agent story is outsourced. Look at the byline.[/p][/quote]And this article? Pure emotive speculation ...[/p][/quote]If emotive speculation bothers you, then you are following the wrong sport. Newspapers and the web devote way more time to rumours, bust-ups and ins and outs than they ever do to actual match reports. Or have you not noticed that? However, I don't see that the Wobby is guilty of that in this case, and Frank Smith has recently been writing a lot of decent, balanced stuff. Not sure what you are so agitated about....[/p][/quote]This article takes the gloss off of a well deserved award for HH by turning it round to be a dig at our current squad. I'm pretty sure there were some under performing players accused of being mercenaries in Heidars' day and his shining example hardly inspired them to better performances. Smith is a second rate journalist with nothing better to write about, who are you, his sister???? VOReason
  • Score: -19

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