Written by David Robinson
With just under 50 days to go until the Premier League season kicks off, the time should hopefully fly by and before you know it Walter Mazzarri will start his reign at St Mary’s stadium where Watford will look to get off to a good start against Southampton. A 13th place finish last season represents an impressive start back in the Premier League but while the club will seemingly always be tipped to flirt with relegation, the hierarchy at the club will be insisting that the Hornets are looking up the table into the top 10 places or higher in years to come. With very few transfers taking place there is still plenty of time for clubs to make some all important signings but I look at 3 current players at Vicarage Road who will be key this campaign. Should they perform it could prove to be a special season for the Golden Boys.
credit Paul Dawson
When Capoue’s form declined in the second half of the season, so did Watford’s which I do think illustrates just how important he is to the side. A few factors did effect his performances towards the run in under Quique Sanchez Flores with the Frenchman being stuck in a wider position at times meaning he couldn’t utilise his strengths on the pitch. At the beginning of the season under Flores we saw the former Spurs man boss midfield’s. He looked the real deal and that’s because he was, using his strength, power and precision on the ball. If Capoue can be played in his best position with the right players around him I’m sure that could go a long way to seeing those type of levels back in his game again but that consistency will need to be there from him across the season. We’ve seen what ability he has and for me he is Watford’s most talented player. A big season from Capoue can take Watford a long way.
An obvious choice, it’s clear to see when Ighalo’s form dried up, Watford found it much harder to get results. Worryingly it was more his performances that were alarming with the Nigerian not contributing much in terms of building attacks but more importantly being wasteful in front of goal costing his team dear. His strange transformation was a very frustrating one as for the opening set of months he was a nightmare for defences. With his breathtaking debut season in the Championship, he followed it up in the Premier League where seemingly, everything he touched turned to goals. This season I think we will really see what Ighalo is all about. Defences are more wised up to his capabilities so it’s up to him to find the answers. His goal scoring form is certainly likely to impact Watford’s season one way or another. A consistently on form Ighalo could drive the club up the table.
I’ve picked Britos as he is likely to feature once again under Walter Mazzarri when both were at Napoli in recent years. The Uruguayan on the whole put in a very impressive debut season at Vicarage Road showing his composure and decision making was largely top class. With Flores structuring the team well defensively, the centre backs were protected and this certainly made life easier for them. Should a more attacking set up be made we could see the likes of Britos and Cathcart more exposed. If Britos can however replicate his form showed last season Mazzarri should be in steady hands. Similar defensive records will give the Hornets the best possible chance of having a brilliant season so the 30 year old and his fellow defenders will need to be on the top of their game throughout.
Watford fans, do you agree with these 3 players? Who else could be hugely influential? Let us know in the comments below!
featured image by Paul Dawson