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Peterborough United Preview (H) - October 20

WATFORD RETURN to action following the international break looking to right the wrongs of their previous home clash, a 2-1 reverse by Middlesbrough.

Whatever your take on the contentious sending off of Matej Vydra, Watford still failed to take the chances they created in the first 20 minutes, ultimately costing them the game. This time Gianfranco Zola's side will be keen to put the game to bed should the opportunities present themselves.

It's been a tough start to their second campaign back at this level for Peterborough United. Currently propping up the table with six points from their opening 10 games, it took Darren Ferguson's side seven games to claim their first win - 3-1 at Hull City - and they have since won one more and lost another.

That the Posh are only scoring a goal a game on average is hardly helping their cause either.

Those two wins both came on the road, so if there's one thing which favours Saturday's visitors, it will be the fact they are playing away from London Road. Watford have of course has a somewhat inauspicious start in front of their own supporters too, with just one win to date.

It was a busy summer for Ferguson, bringing in some nine new faces to strengthen a squad which had secured it's Championship status the previous season.

The addition of former Aston Villa and Torquay United goalkeeper Robert Olejnik looks to have been a shrewd one following the departure of Joe Lewis and Paul Jones.

Olejnik, 25, joined Posh from the League Two club for a fee of 300,000 and has quickly impressed despite the two-division step-up.

Born in Vienna, the 6'2 Austrian has previously made over 100 appearances for Scottish outfit Falkirk before moving back into English football last term with the Gulls.

Versatile former Stevenage man Michael Bostwick is another who has quickly set about making a first-team shirt his own.

The 24 year-old is equally comfortable in the centre of defence or the centre of midfield and made the switch from Stevenage for an undisclosed fee.

Aggressive in the tackle, Bostwick worked his way back into the professional game via Crawley Town, Rushden & Diamonds and Ebbsfleet United after being released by Millwall in 2007.

Ferguson also boosted his striking options on October 1, signing West Bromwich Albion's young forward Saido Berahino on-loan until January 2.

Born in Burundi, the 19 year-old already has Football League experience having previously turned out for Northampton Town and Brentford on-loan, scoring 10 in 22 combined.

Disagreements with Bees' boss Uwe Rosler cut short a promising loan spell earlier this year & now the forward will be looking to prove that he has what it takes to cut it at Championship level.

Ferguson has the luxury of a fully-fit squad to choose from with midfielder Grant McCann undergoing a scan which cleared him of any issue after missing international duty with Northern Ireland.

The big call for Zola is who will partner Troy Deeney up front? With both Vydra and Fernando Forestieri now free from suspension the decision is a nice headache for the Hornet's boss.

John Eustace (back), Prince Buaben (thigh) and Geoffrey Mujangi Bia (strain) are all out whilst Neuton (ankle) is doubtful.

Predicted line-ups:

Watford:
Almunia; Hoban, Hall, Nosworthy; Cassetti, Chalobah, Hogg, Abdi, Pudil; Vydra & Deeney.

Peterborough United: Olejnik; Little, Brisley, Knight-Percival, Alcock; Bostwick; Ferdinand, Rowe; Boyd; Sinclair & Barnett.

Referee: Mr G Eltringham.




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The Journalist

Writer: Tom Bodell Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday October 19 2012

Time: 10:53AM

 

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