After an interesting international break, it’s time to turn our attention back to the agony and ecstasy of Premier League football. Prior to the break, Watford lost 4-0 at home to Bournemouth, in it what was, by a long way, the most underwhelming performance of the season.
An early red card for Christian Kabasele set the tone for the Hornets in a game they never looked like contending in, and they went on to be beaten by the highest margin this season. However, what better way is there to bounce back from a heavy defeat than to collect all 3 points in the next game after a long break.
This weekend’s fixture sees the Hornets take on a Wolves side on an outstanding run of form. Nuno Espirito Santo’s team has not been beaten since the end of August and will be a tough test for side who haven’t tasted winning ways for a while now. Wolverhampton have taken points off the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United this season, which emphasises just how much of a well drilled unit they are.
If Javi Gracia’s side are to take anything from Saturday’s trip to Molineux, two fundamental improvements must be made. Our defence that started so well this season has looked shaky in recent weeks. Christian Kabasele’s unnecessary red card before the international break will see the Hornets’ defence rearranged with unfamiliar partnerships that will need to instantly gel if we are to leave with any points.
Additionally, after being more noticeable in the media than on the pitch of late, Troy Deeney needs to start finding the net and prioritising his performances more than his rapport with people outside of football. If he can reignite his partnership with Andre Gray from early on in the season, then the Hornets go back to looking up the league and not over their shoulders.
The Hornets will of course be without Kabasele through suspension and Daryl Janmaat who is a longer term absentee after surgery on his knee. However, the Hornets are boosted with having the likes of Gerard Deulofeu and England international Nathanial Chalobah back fit.
In a game that I believe will not lack goals, I believe the Hornets will escape with a point in a 2-2 score draw.
Watford: Foster; Navarro, Cathcart, Prodl, Femenia; Doucoure, Capoue, Hughes, Pereyra; Gray, Deeney.