Category: August

29th August 2020- Friendly, Watford 1 Scunthorpe United 0

This was very much in the pre-pandemic style of a ‘behind closed doors’ game as no details of our team were given either on the official site or twitter.

A Watford XI defeated Scunthorpe United at Vicarage Road this afternoon, thanks to a first-half goal from summer signing Jeremy Ngakia.

Scunthorpe United FC: Report: Watford 1-0 Iron

Cox reacts to Watford warm-up game

Photos: Watford (a)

15th August 2020- Vladimir Ivic appointed Head Coach

Vladimir Ivić is the new Head Coach of Watford, the club is delighted to confirm. A two-time league winner as manager of Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv, in both 2018/19 and 2019/20, Ivić also led PAOK to Greek Cup glory in 2016/17.

BBC Sport Vladimir Ivic: Watford confirm appointment of new head coach

Things are starting to happen at WD18, so naturally there is a new From the Rookery End podcast! With the arrival of Vladimir Ivić seemingly imminent, Mike and Jon spoke to a couple of experts on his career. Middle Eastern football expert Ben Jacobs and Israel based journalist Raphael Gellar joined the boys to provide fascinating insight into Ivić, his philosophy, career, methods and perhaps most importantly of all, to confirm whether or not Watford fans should be excited by the appointment!

31st August 2019- Premier League, Newcastle United 1 Watford 1

Goal: 1

Newcastle United 1 – 1 Watford

Watford get first league point away at Newcastle United

Watford earn their first points of the new season with a draw at Newcastle United

Javi Gracia wants to build on Watford draw against Newcastle United

Javi Gracia thinks all of Watford’s players deserve to play more

A selection of images from Watford’s draw at Newcastle United

Will Hughes thinks Watford could have got more from draw at Newcastle United

Watford earned their first point of the season with a 1-1 draw against Newcastle after an end-to-end contest at St James’ Park.

After a barren start to the season in which his side had conceded seven times, Watford manager Javi Gracia adjusted both the shape and personnel of the team for their trip to the north east.

Despite Newcastle’s encouraging, if unexpected, win at Tottenham last Sunday, the crowd of 44,157 was the lowest for a Premier League fixture at St James’ Park in seven years. Those that turned up saw Gracia enjoy the sort of morale-boosting start his side so desperately needed in the wake of three straight defeats. After two minutes Tom Cleverley’s 20-yard shot was deflected into the path of Will Hughes, who delighted in beating Martin Dubravka from close range.

It felt like hard work for all concerned. Two functional teams struggling to find their rhythm, delivering a contest so littered with mistakes you had to remind yourself it was a Premier League match.

Gracia finally made a double substitution with 20 minutes to go, and it was not the change that the crowd had been calling for as Doucouré made way for Chalobah and Success replaced Hughes.  I have to admit that even I booed the removal of Hughes who had been the best player on the pitch.  Will left the field on the side opposite the dugout, so walked in front of the away fans and his name was sung with some gusto.  Success showed his worth to us naysayers as he received a ball over the top and put in a low cross for Gray, but it was intercepted.  Not satisfied with the changes so far, the away fans were chanting for Deulofeu to make an appearance.

This week Jon is on the phone to Colin, who made the trip up to Tyneside and up the 14 flights of stairs to the away section at St James Park. Colin gives his views on the teams performance as well as the individuals who got the Hornets their first Premier League point of the season.

27th August 2019- League Cup Second Round, Watford 3 Coventry City 0

Javi Gracia’s final programme notes.

Goal 1  2  3

Watford 3 – 0 Coventry City

Watford beat Coventry City in the second round of the Carabao Cup

Ismaila Sarr helps Watford beat Coventry City in Carabao Cup

Javi Gracia was not surprised by the quality of Watford’s goals against Coventry City

Watford players rated after their Carabao Cup win over Coventry City

Tom Dele-Bashiru insists the Watford players are firmly behind head coach Javi Gracia

Club record signing Ismaila Sarr marked his first Watford start with a goal to help the Premier League’s bottom club overcome League One Coventry in the Carabao Cup second round.

 If there’s something fundamentally wrong at the club then it clearly hasn’t extended to this lot, who made up for a little rawness and rustiness with a performance of refreshing positivity.

Coventry had been given the whole end and their fans had come in droves, which was great to see.

The first win for the Golden Boys this season and oh how good it felt. Jon, Jason and Mike gathered to discuss it, the players who shone, and played for a starting place in the first team, and those who got some minutes under their belts. They also discuss the blame game and who should we point the finger at for the poor start to the season and the poor end to last season as well.

24th August 2019- Premier League, Watford 1 West Ham United 3

1-1

Watford 1 – 3 West Ham United

Winless Watford face West Ham United in the Premier League

West Ham United send Watford to third straight defeat at start of season

Watford vs West Ham United: Javi Gracia left to rue shortcomings at both ends

Watford players rated after home defeat to West Ham United

A selection of images from Watford’s defeat to West Ham United

Tom Cleverley wants Watford players to hold themselves accountable after West Ham United defeat

Andre Gray wants Watford to forget last season and move on

The Hornets shot themselves in the foot inside two minutes when Abdoulaye Doucoure caught Manuel Lanzini in the box, and Mark Noble stepped up to slot home from the spot on his 350th Premier League appearance.

But Watford responded to level with a well-worked Andre Gray goal, with the forward drilling home a right-foot shot from Will Hughes’ pass. However, the Hornets were punished for their wastefulness in front of goal with just three of their 23 shots finding the target.

Only Hughes will know how he did not improve that ratio when, in the 55th minute, he met Gray’s fizzed centre at the far post after the striker had skipped around Lukasz Fabianski. It was a sitter but, perhaps seeing the ball late, Hughes turned it wide from a matter of inches.

Reprieved, West Ham recovered some of the momentum they had at the start of the game and quickly punished the hosts for their failures in front of goal when Haller restored the Hammers’ lead in the 64th minute, turning home Felipe Anderson’s low cross. Haller’s second then came eight minutes later after Michail Antonio met Lanzini’s corner with a header that Ben Foster tipped onto the bar with the French striker reacting well to head home the rebound from close range.

We’ve played indisputably the best football we’ve played this season, and we’ve lost by two clear goals.  For the first time since promotion, we’re in trouble.

The post-match mood was sombre.  As last week against Everton, we faced a team that we could and should have beaten, but we were undone by our lack of clinical finishing and the generosity of our defence.  Dawson is getting a lot of criticism, but he was left exposed by Femenía who certainly adds to our attacking options but is so often missing in defence.  I was encouraged by a lot of the forward play but, too often, the players wait for the perfect sight of goal and end up losing out to a defender.

Not Jumping off the deep end