Vital Football

Latest Watford FC News

Away From Home: Dyer, McGugan, Deeney

Away From Home: Dyer, McGugan, Deeney
Once again, a successful week turned sour in the midst of midweek action.

A demolishing 4-1 victory over Leeds United looked set to reignite the season following the disastrous Lloyd Dyer debacle, and considering the convincing manner of the performance, the suggestion that everything bad had passed rang true.

However, away from the Championship, the League Cup brought despair back to Vicarage Road - although, with Watford`s dreadful record in the competition, it seems unwise to read anything into the 2-1 home defeat to League One Doncaster Rovers.

Following Dyer`s outburst in the midweek game away at Rotherham, it was bold of Beppe Sannino to drop him from the match day squad for the home tie with Leeds. Whilst the staid performance shown in the first half may have had fans calling for the former Leicester man's inclusion, the domination of the second half - somewhat courtesy of the first red card - proved the Italian coach had made the right decision.

His decision to select Fernando Forestieri as Troy Deeney`s strike partner - rather than Dyer - worked wonders, as the 24-year old scored the opening goal, won the penalty for the second, and then netted the third - a goal that is likely to be in the running for goal of the season come the closing of the season.

With Matej Vydra still returning from injury, and only warranting a place of the bench, the other option to support Deeney up front would have been Lewis McGugan. The midfielder excelled on the opening day against Bolton, attacking with his usual talent, but also willing to express himself elsewhere on the pitch - something missing from his game last season.

However, he has also been in the glaring eyes of Sannino, due to a reported 'disagreement`. He, like Dyer, also failed to make the matchday squad, and following his substitution in the League Cup defeat, he immediately left the pitch and walked down the tunnel.

Rather than dwelling on off-pitch matters - of which many are negative - I`m going to focus on the one tactical aspect that struck me in the victory over Leeds - the new ability to win a game from a subversive position.

Under Gianfranco Zola`s reign of 'sexy football`, Watford usually dominated possession, and whilst this was majestic to watch - especially in the period of consistent goalscoring during his first season in charge - it occasionally failed to turn into goals.

The opening day 1-0 victory over Birmingham City last season was a prime example of this: Watford had 58% possession, a remarkable feat for an away game, but converted just one of six chances. The victory over Leeds saw the Hornets forsake ball control - registering just 45% - choosing instead to focus upon directness - with an incredible 21 shots recorded. Whilst just six of these chances were on target, four of them were converted to show a fair scoreline following the dominating performance.

In fact, it appears as if Leeds have turned into the Watford from last season, dominating games with no end product. The 55% possession they recorded at Vicarage Road has been a consistent display this season, although they have registered an average of just seven shots per game. Compare this with Watford, whose lower average possession of 46% has been rewarded with a higher average shots per game - 15.

Whilst I wanted to shy away from off-pitch matters, one piece of business is more than newsworthy - Troy Deeney`s new contract. A remarkable act by both the club and the player have kept Deeney in Hertfordshire for the immediate future, with his desire to play in the Premier League with Watford the most important factor in his decision.

In this age of mercenary players chasing personal success and money, it is a breath of fresh air to see Deeney choose to stay in the Championship for the good of the team. With the future years he is willing to stay here, he is likely to pass over the thin line that remains to see him embedded in Hornets folklore - a living legend waiting to be made.

Writer:Billy Hawkins
Date:Friday August 29 2014
Time: 8:27PM

Best of Vital Network

Vital Boxing - Adams Turns Professional

Login to post a comment

Recent Watford Articles

West Brom's Ighalo Interest Over

If Odion Ighalo is to leave Watford before the end of the month it wouldn't appear this will take him to Premier League rivals West Brom.

Gomes Relatively Happy With Bournemouth Point

Watford were twice in a position to end our long Premier League run without a win at Bournemouth but the Hornets had to be content with a point in the end.

Deal For Zarate By Wednesday

Rumoured Watford interest in former Birmingham, West Ham & QPR forward Mauro Zarate first surfaced last week. His arrival from Fiorentina should be confirmed by Wednesday?

Vital View - Premier League, 21st-22nd Jan 2017

Chelsea extended their lead at the top of the table. At the other end Swansea moved out of the bottom 3 with Crystal Palace replacing them joining Hull and Sunderland.

Archived Vital Watford Articles

Vital Watford articles from

Site Journalists

Write for Vital Watford
Write For Vital Watford
Apply Here

Current Poll (see more polls)

Bournemouth MotM
Suggested By:
Gomes29%
Kaboul0%
Prodl0%
Britos7%
Kabasele0%
Capoue0%
Cleverley57%
Holebas0%
Doucoure0%
Deeney0%
Okaka0%
Sub - Janmaat0%
Sub - Cathcart0%
Sub - Ighalo7%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Chelsea 22 18 1 3 55 32
2 Arsenal 22 14 5 3 47 27
3 Spurs 22 13 7 2 46 29
4 Liverpool 22 13 6 3 45 24
5 Man City 22 13 4 5 43 15
6 Man Utd 22 11 8 3 41 12
7 Everton 22 10 6 6 36 10
8 WBA 22 9 5 8 32 2
9 Stoke 22 7 7 8 28 -6
10 West Ham 22 8 4 10 28 -7
11 Southampton 22 7 6 9 27 -4
12 AFC Bournemouth 22 7 5 10 26 -7
13 Burnley 22 8 2 12 26 -9
14 Watford 22 6 6 10 24 -13
15 Leicester City 22 5 6 11 21 -13
16 Middlesbrough 22 4 8 10 20 -7
17 Swansea 22 5 3 14 18 -25
18 Crystal Palace 22 4 4 14 16 -11
19 Hull City 22 4 4 14 16 -27
20 Sunderland 22 4 3 15 15 -22
Vital Football Comment
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Write for Vital Football

Recent Watford Results (view all)

Watford Fixtures (view all)

Jan 29 2017 12:00PM : Millwall (a)
FA Cup
Jan 31 2017 7:45PM : Arsenal (a)
Barclays Premier League
Feb 4 2017 3:00PM : Burnley (H)
Barclays Premier League
Feb 11 2017 3:00PM : Manchester United (a)
Barclays Premier League
Feb 25 2017 5:30PM : West Ham United (H)
Barclays Premier League
Mar 4 2017 3:00PM : Southampton (H)
Barclays Premier League
The Vital Football Members League