Written by David Robinson
Watford go into the game against Everton knowing a loss would make it three defeats in a row going into a crucial and hectic Christmas schedule. This is exactly the reason why this match has real meaning to the Hornets who then have to travel to Manchester City midweek. If Mazzarri is to take the side further than last season, avoiding defeat and particularly a win could do the club a world of good as it would at the very least be enough to overtake the Toffees who themselves are winless in 4.
This makes for an interesting game for the early Saturday kick off where both sides will have players missing. Yannick Bolasie has suffered serious ligament damage ruling him out in the long term which is a serious blow while Watford have been hampered with suspensions and injuries as Roberto Pereyra added himself to the list following a red card against West Brom. This leads me on to three key points ahead of this match.
- Midfield Creativity
With Pereyra out of the match, it leaves drastic questions as to what answer Mazzarri can provide from midfield. This has been an underlying issue all season in my opinion. The usual midfield three of Behrami, Capoue and Pereyra has simply not been as effective as it should be when it comes to being on the ball. While Behrami is a limited passer, Capoue and Pereyra certainly have enough about them to control a midfield, we have seen this in glimpses. However it has only been glimpses and this has lead to the midfield being out thought and ultimately the forwards have been starved of genuine quality coming into them as well as a consistent tempo being enforced. With Pereyra on paper being the main creative spark this only causes greater worries that Watford will be out done in a crucial area come Saturday. Watson and Behrami cannot play together and Guedioura has not been convincing in previous starts, it doesn’t bode well.
2. Troy vs Williams
Fans have highlighted the performances of the clubs talisman and I think rightfully so in some instances. Deeney has spent too much time moaning at others rather than getting on with his own job. In fact, I thought he could’ve taken a look at West Brom forward Rondon last weekend about how to go about things. Likely opposition in Ashley Williams & Funes Mori/Jagielka are not ideal for the skipper, as this defence are physical enough to stop one of Troy’s greatest attributes. The goal drought may create a mental problem and a pressure to find his 100th goal for the club. It should be an interesting tussle and finding out who partners Deeney also could be pivotal in terms of rediscovering Deeney’s form.
3. Any consistency in team selection
Walter Mazzarri has had his hands tied a lot of the time when it comes to team selection. Particularly most recently with injuries and suspensions. Again the changes are expected to be made again following a poor outing at West Brom last week, not only does this continue to hinder the team, it has to raise questions over the Italian’s capabilities who’s side continue to leak soft goals although you can have slight sympathy with changes being forced. It would be nice for this side to find a consistent formula particularly at the back where the inconsistency has clearly rubbed off on the performances.
Watford fans, are you confident of a win? What do you make of these points? Let us know in the comments below!