Vital Watford Readers' POTM- December 2014
We want YOUR vote on who you think should be the Vital Watford Readers' Player of the Month, as we analyse the performances of three players put forward by us at Vital Watford.
The player I'm putting forward for the Vital Watford readers' player of the month is our skipper and number nine, Troy Deeney.
Deeney has had a month to remember, with the Hornets' number nine netting a hat-trick on the first game of the month against Fulham, putting and end to that abysmal spell we found ourselves on, then netting a brace against Malky's Wigan side the following week.
It was an unusual brace for Deeney, finding the net on his first occasion with his left foot and then securing the brace and all three points with his head.
Headers and left footers is something we don't usually see from the skipper, so great to see a good use of versatility from him.
Going back to the emphatic 5-0 drubbing over Fulham, that was his second Watford and career hat trick.
He had a tricky spell coming towards the end of the month with a slight knock, which did trouble him a bit in the Boxing Day clash versus Wolves but did brilliantly when coming off the bench against Cardiff in the following game, using his pace and power to cross the ball and tee up Angella for Watford's fourth goal against the Bluebirds.
It was a great month for the striker, as he netted five goals in as many appearances, so this is why I'm putting forward Troy to be the Vital Watford Readers' Player of the Month.
My pick for Player of the Month for December is Almen Abdi. You'd be hard-pressed to find a month where Abdi's played throughout and he's not at least in with a shout for Player of the Month, but his performances in December have been crucial.
First of all, off the back of a disappointing home defeat to Cardiff at the end of November - the fourth Hornets defeat in a row - an away trip to Fulham on Friday the 5th of December looked pretty daunting. The eventual 5-0 drubbing was down to more than just Abdi's performance of course, but he was deservedly man of the match, with his ruthless approach play leading to the Fulham keeper's sending off (among other things), and his deft but powerful striking ability in evidence for the match's opener and the Hornets' spectacular fourth goal.
Abdi's form continued throughout the month, with another highlight coming in the battling 1-0 victory away at Reading, where Watford played with 10 men for half of the game. It took Abdi's clinical nature in front of goal to secure the three points, with a resilient display typified in Abdi's willingness to chase the ball and keep pressuring the Royals' midfield while Watford did not have possession. Without Abdi in that game, the deadlock may not have been broken.
My nomination for the December Player Of The Month goes to the unsung hero that is Craig Cathcart. After joining from Blackpool on a free transfer in the summer, Cathcart had only started two games for the Hornets until he was restored to the starting line-up in place of Joel Ekstrand at Fulham when Watford reverted to playing a back-three.
It was that game at Fulham where Watford's fortunes changed on the back of four straight league defeats. It was the impressive attacking display that caught the eye that night at Fulham but what has been equally important in the recent upturn of results has been the improved defensive display throughout December.
This was no more evident than in the game at Reading where Watford played with ten men for the duration of the second half but stood firm to keep the clean sheet that allowed them to go on and win the game. Cathcart's role in the defensive improvement in December cannot be underestimated. Whilst Watford may have more flamboyant, bigger named defenders, Cathcart's know-how, Championship experience and uncompromising style has added a steel to the Watford defence that had been missing this season and has provided the backbone to the Hornets improved form.
So there we have it, Troy Deeney, Almen Abdi and Craig Cathcart are the Hornets' players nominated for the Vital Watford Readers' Player of the Month, vote for the player you think has been the best in December 2014, on the poll located on the Vital Watford homepage!