Thursday 21


Gracia ready for City test

8th March 2019, 06:27 by Alex Jack

Javi Gracia knows Watford must produce a "perfect" defensive display if they are to take anything from their clash at Manchester City.

The Hornets travel to face one of the title contenders for the second time in a fortnight, having last month been on the end of a 5-0 drubbing by Liverpool.

A subsequent last-gasp win over Leicester lifted spirits at Vicarage Road considerably, but now another huge test awaits against the leaders and defending champions, whose 76-goal haul already this season is 12 more than that of the next most prolific team, Liverpool.

"It was important to get the three points and it was important to get a good result after the defeat against Liverpool," said Hornets boss Gracia.

"You know City have high-quality players, a very good squad and maybe you have to do perfect defensive work.

"You have less possession than them, for sure, and you have to manage your possession to create some chances to score.

"To do very good defensive work and at the end if you do it you have some options to get a good result."

Watford are firmly in the hunt for a seventh-placed finish and potential Europa League qualification, but Gracia is looking no further than their next assignment.

"At this moment you don't know what is going to happen in the next games," he added.

"I know a lot of people like to hear that we are going to achieve seventh, but at this moment I prefer to only focus on the next game.

"By trying to get the next three points, we'll be able to achieve something different at the end of the season, but only if we concentrate on the next three points. It's the best way.

"We are in a good moment, but not only with the results. I think the attitude and atmosphere in the team all season, with good or bad results, is important.

"In the last few games, nine games left, and with all the players available, they need to play like they can do."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Alex Jack is a Yorkshireman with Scottish connections and well versed in a number of sports. A Leeds United supporter, who also enjoys both codes of rugby. Leeds Rhinos is where you can find him in the summer, while Alex is an avid supporter of Scottish rugby union.

More Watford


Togetherness the key for Mariappa

20th March 2019, 16:56

Adrian Mariappa says Watford’s unity has been the key to their success this season.


Deulofeu keen to swap Watford for Milan

20th March 2019, 09:42

Gerard Deulofeu has reportedly informed Watford he would like to join AC Milan after learning that they remained interested in him.


Gray happy with international break timing

19th March 2019, 17:23

Watford forward Andre Gray believes the international break has arrived at the right time for the club.


All change for key Watford clashes

19th March 2019, 16:54

Watford have announced the dates for their rearranged Premier League matches against Fulham and Southampton in April.


Mariappa aiming for Wembley glory with Watford

18th March 2019, 12:19

Watford defender Adrian Mariappa has set his sights on reaching the FA Cup final with his hometown club.


Gracia likely to stick with Gomes at Wembley

18th March 2019, 12:14

Watford boss Javi Gracia has suggested he will stick with goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes during next month's FA Cup semi-final with Wolves.

Recent Sport Headlines


Alexander-Arnold leaves England squad

21st March 2019, 03:12

Trent Alexander-Arnold has pulled out of the England squad and returned to Liverpool for treatment on a back injury.

Manchester City

City ace escapes serious injury

21st March 2019, 02:46

Manchester City ace Leroy Sane was lucky to escape a broken leg against Serbia, Germany head coach Joachim Low says.

Manchester United

Real are a dream club says Pogba

21st March 2019, 02:36

Paul Pogba insists he is happy playing for Manchester United but has described Real Madrid as a dream club.

Rugby Union

Wales still want Edwards

21st March 2019, 02:03

Wales have told Shaun Edwards they are willing to hold talks over his future should his move to Wigan Warriors not go through.

Rugby League

Chester reveals plan to sink Wire

21st March 2019, 02:02

Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester is targeting an upset against Warrington this evening but says they will have to get physical.

Rugby League

Tigers let Roberts go

21st March 2019, 02:02

Castleford Tigers say they have reached a mutual agreement with Ben Roberts that will see him leave the club immediately.

Coventry City

No-go on takeover bid

20th March 2019, 22:27

Coventry's owner has rejected an "extremely low bid" from a consortium led by former chairman Gary Hoffman.

Crystal Palace

Trippier says Wan Bissaka could have had call-up

20th March 2019, 19:21

Kieran Trippier says Crystal Palace right-back Aaron Wan Bissaka could have made the England squad for their Euro 2020 qualifiers.