Watford

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  1. Watford v Southampton: Head-to-head stats, published at15:17 27 October

    Watford v Southampton Premier League head-to-head record. Games: 12. Watford - 2 wins, 15 goals, 2 clean sheets. Southampton - 5 wins, 20 goals, 3 clean sheets
    • Watford have won just one of their last 13 league meetings with Southampton (six draws, six defeats), beating them 2-0 at St Mary’s in September 2017.

    • Southampton haven’t lost an away league match against Watford since September 2007, in the Championship (three wins and four draws since) - beating them 3-1 on their last visit to Vicarage Road in June 2020.

    • Watford are looking to win back-to-back Premier League matches for the first time since July 2020 (vs Norwich and Newcastle). The Hornets scored more goals in their 5-2 win against Everton last time out than they had in their previous seven league games combined (four).

  2. Premier League fixtures at a glance, published at11:58 27 October

    Premier League fixtures: Leicester v Arsenal (Sat, 12:30 BST), Burnley v Brentford  (Sat, 15:00 BST),  Liverpool v Brighton (Sat, 15:00 BST),  Man City v Crystal Palace  (Sat, 15:00 BST), Newcastle v Chelsea  (Sat, 15:00 BST), Watford v Southampton (Sat, 15:00 BST), Tottenham v Man Utd (Sat, 17:30 BST), Norwich v Leeds (Sun, 14:00 GMT), Aston Villa v West Ham (Sun, 16:30 GMT), Wolves v Everton (Mon, 20:00 GMT)
  3. Watford v Southampton: Who makes your Hornets team?, published at16:40 26 October

    Watford team selector graphic

    Watford host Southampton in the latest round of Premier League fixtures on Saturday, but who will make it into Claudio Ranieri's starting XI?

    You'll be able to pick - and share on social media - your own line-up for every Premier League game throughout the campaign.

    It's up to you how to approach it - you could go for the team you WANT the boss to pick or the one you THINK he will.

    Either way, it's time to choose your Hornets team to face Southampton

  4. Tuesday talking point: Hornets fans on cloud nine, published at14:27 26 October

    Matt Rowson, BHaPPY blog, external

    Of all the enemies of the travelling fan, the M6 is the cruellest. Countless are the hours spent glumly staring at red tail lights as the time to kick-off approaches, as any leeway offered for lunch, conviviality or other decoration to the focus of the trip is whittled away.

    It’s a motorway that spits out bollards with a relentless vindictiveness, that will make a mockery of the most conservative of departure times. Somewhere near junction 18 there’s a Ford Focus full of Bristol City fans that left Preston before the final whistle of a 5-0 defeat in 2017 but still haven’t reached Sandbach services. It’s a miserable, miserable place to be a football fan.

    Not on Saturday though. On Saturday, we floated home.

  5. Watford's stirring comeback: In pictures, published at10:07 26 October

    Watford were twice behind at Goodison Park, with the club's former player Richarlison putting Everton 2-1 upImage source, Reuters
    Image caption,

    Watford were twice behind at Goodison Park, with the Hornets' former player Richarlison putting Everton 2-1 up

    The Hornets had not come from behind to win a Premier League game since 2019 but after they levelled, Joshua King put them aheadImage source, Reuters
    Image caption,

    The Hornets had not come from behind to win a Premier League game since 2019 but, after they levelled, Joshua King put them ahead

    Everton had never lost a home league fixture to Watford and the away side duly celebrated wildly during their late run of goalsImage source, Reuters
    Image caption,

    Everton had never lost a home league fixture to Watford and the away side duly celebrated wildly during their late run of goals

    Emmanuel Dennis leapt in celebration after scoring Watford's fifth as Claudio Ranieri's side ran in four goals from the 78th minute onwardsImage source, Reuters
    Image caption,

    Emmanuel Dennis leapt in celebration after scoring Watford's fifth as Claudio Ranieri's side ran in four goals from the 78th minute onwards

    Ranieri embraced Joshua King after he left the field with the match ball courtesy of his hat-trickImage source, Reuters
    Image caption,

    Ranieri embraced Joshua King after he left the field with the match ball courtesy of his hat-trick

  6. Hornets hat-trick hero King makes Garth's team of week, published at12:19 25 October

    Hat-trick hero Joshua King returned to haunt former club Everton as the Hornets pulled off a scintillating 5-2 win at Goodison - and the striker's treble has earned him a place in Garth Crooks' team of the week.

    Garth Crooks' team of the week graphic.Image source, BBC Sport

    Joshua King: On King's return to Goodison Park he scores a hat-trick, provides Claudio Ranieri with his first win for his new club and puts the nightmare of Liverpool and Salah's 5-0 hammering last week well and truly behind them.

    If a week's a long time in politics it must have felt like a lifetime for Watford. Two very different outcomes against two Merseyside clubs.

    Read what else Garth had to say about King and Watford's win, plus see who else made it into his team of the week

  7. Ranieri substitution the game changer', published at11:36 25 October

    Geoff Doyle, BBC Three Counties Radio

    Watford’s victory at Everton will be remembered for Joshua King’s hat-trick, Claudio Ranieri’s first win as Hornets head coach and the team’s emphatic response to the 5-0 defeat at home by Liverpool the week before.

    What won’t get much attention is the double substitution Ranieri made with around 30 minutes to go, just after Everton had gone 2-1 up. The tinkerman did the unthinkable and hooked Ismaila Sarr.

    The Senegal winger isn’t untouchable but he’s Watford’s best player, their most valuable asset and, in terms of stats this season, the leading goalscorer, chance creator, dribbler and best crosser. He’d also just spun Lucas Digne and set up a great chance for King.

    It takes a brave man to sub him and in doing so would have left Ranieri open to criticism if it failed. But it didn’t. It was ingenious.

    Emmanuel Dennis replaced him and Ranieri explained to me afterwards it was because Dennis could be a threat in attack and also offer a better option defensively. As it turned out, Dennis was most decisive in attack, involved in three of the four late goals - scoring one and assisting two others.

    Other head coaches wouldn’t have had the bottle to take off Sarr. Ranieri does and also had the tactical nous to know what was best for the team.

    That’s 35 years of managing at the top level for you.

  8. Everton 2-5 Watford: The pick of the stats, published at10:37 25 October

    Andros Townsend is chased down by Juraj KuckaImage source, Getty Images
    • Everton suffered their first ever home defeat against Watford in any competition, having been unbeaten in 15 home matches against the Hornets prior to today.

    • Watford scored five goals in an away Premier League game for just a second time (vs Cardiff in February 2019), becoming just the seventh newly promoted side in Premier League history to score five or more goals in an away game.

    • The Hornets came from behind to win an away Premier League game for the first time since January 2019 vs Crystal Palace, having lost each of their previous 21 such matches in the competition before today.

  9. Hat-trick hero King your star man in Hornets win, published at08:31 25 October

    Player Rater - Josh King scored 8.26

    Josh King was your man of the match in our Player Rater as his hat-trick helped Watford to their first win under Claudio Ranieri as they beat Everton 5-2 at Goodison Park.

    The Norway striker netted three goals against his former club, having not scored in 11 appearances for the Toffees in the first half of 2021.

    Read the match report and see how all the players rated

  10. 'Watford took the attack to Everton', published at07:25 25 October

    Tim Oscroft, BBC Sport

    When Tom Davies slid in to convert Demarai Gray's low cross from close range after three minutes it looked like being another difficult day against Merseyside opposition for Claudio Ranieri following their 5-0 thrashing at Vicarage Road a week earlier.

    But, while Everton failed to build on that start and were tentative, Watford took the attack to the home side in defiance of having the lowest number of shots in the Premier League - 76 - prior to this match.

    It is a second successive home defeat for Everton's former Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez and some boos greeted the Spaniard's decision to replace Anthony Gordon with Richarlison in the second half.

    He seemed vindicated when the Brazilian struck with a fine diving header just three minutes after coming on, but Benitez then saw his side's lead evaporate in a disastrous final 10 minutes that leaves his side in eighth place.

    Watford, having started life under Ranieri with an emphatic defeat against Liverpool, climb the table to 14th - suddenly well clear of the relegation zone.

  11. Everton v Watford confirmed team news, published at14:07 23 October

    Everton v Watford

    We're now less than an hour away from kick-off between Everton and Watford at Goodison Park.

    Click here to follow all the action

    You'll be able to catch up with all the post-match reaction on this page after full-time.

    Rafa Benitez makes two changes to the side that lost to West Ham, with Anthony Gordon and Tom Davies in for Abdoulaye Doucouré and Alex Iwobi.

    Everton starting XI: Pickford, Coleman, Godfrey, Keane, Digne; Townsend, Davies, Allan, Gordon; Gray, Rondon.

    Substitutes: Begovic, Lonergan, Kenny, Holgate, Richarlkison, Iwobi, Gbamin, Dobbin,

    Everton teamImage source, BBC Sport

    There are changes to Watford's starting line up from the side that were thrashed by Liverpool, with Jeremy Ngakia, Joshua King and Ozan Tufan brought in for Danny Rose, Emmanuel Dennis and Kiko Femenia by Claudio Ranieri.

    Watford starting XI: Foster, Nkagia, Ekong, Cathcart, Tufan, Masina; KIng, Kucka, Sissoko, Hernandez; Sarr.

    Substitutes: Bachmann, Lauza, Cleverley, Pedro, Sema, Nkoulou, Gosling, Fletcher, Dennis.

    Watford teamImage source, BBC Sport
  12. Lawro's predictions: Everton v Watford , published at17:22 22 October

    Mark Lawrenson takes on Elena Cole and Haydn Craven, stars of football drama Jamie Johnson, for the latest round of Premier League predictions.

    Mark Lawrenson

    Lawro's prediction: 2-0

    I'm not sure what Watford were trying to do in their 5-0 defeat by Liverpool last weekend, in Claudio Ranieri's first game as Hornets boss.

    They made it so easy for Liverpool, and didn't even start to try to play until they were 4-0 down.

    Watford have to do more here, but I don't think this is a good time for them to play Everton, who were beaten at home by former manager David Moyes' West Ham at the weekend.

    We will see a reaction from Rafa Benitez's side too, that's for sure. I know they are still without Dominic Calvert-Lewin up front, but they should still win this one.

    Elena's prediction: I've got to go for the Everton win, haven't I? We've made a good start to the season, but we just need to keep it up. I don't think we will make the top four, but we can finish in the top six. 2-0

    Haydn's prediction: Elena went for an Everton win? That won't happen - no chance! 1-1

    Find out how Lawro, Elena and Haydn think the rest of this week's fixtures will go

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  13. Ranieri 'needs to freshen up ageing Watford team', published at16:10 22 October

    Geoff Doyle, BBC Three Counties Radio

    I put it to Watford head coach Claudio Ranieri that it must be a good time to play Everton - who will be without Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Abdoulaye Doucoure and possibly Richarlison. His amused reply was “let’s wait and see”.  

    But surely it must be more preferable to play the Toffees without three of their best players? The latter two, of course, are former Watford stars. 

    They left the Hornets to progress their careers - Doucoure, 27 at the time, for a fee rising to about £25m, and Richarlison, then 21, for up to £50m. Other good ones have gone too over the last few years, for money, such as Gerard Deulofeu, Will Hughes, Roberto Pereyra and Etienne Capoue. 

    Compare that to the first team now: Ben Foster, Danny Rose, Craig Cathcart, Kiko Femenia, Moussa Sissoko, Tom Cleverley, Juraj Kucka and Nicolas Nkoulou are all in their 30s. This is currently an ageing Watford first team with saleable assets in much shorter supply, which is a worry - especially with the threat of relegation. 

    Ranieri hinted he might need younger legs in midfield at Goodison Park. His only options are Ozan Tufan (who's on loan) and Imran Louza.

    Ismaila Sarr - who is the Hornets' most valuable asset - is set to return to his usual right wing role after the tinkering last weekend didn't work; he's been tried before as striker and it failed.

    Ranieri might also be tempted to start another youngster, Joao Pedro, who was the only Watford player to look composed and comfortable against Liverpool when he came on.

    You can listen to commentary on Everton v Watford on BBC Three Counties Radio 103.8 and 92.1FM

  14. Everton v Watford: Team news, published at15:09 22 October

    Richarlison and Josh King split picture graphic

    Everton forward Richarlison is back in full training and could play after a five-match absence with a knee injury.

    Abdoulaye Doucoure is out with a fractured metatarsal, while Dominic Calvert-Lewin has suffered a setback in his recovery from a thigh problem.

    Watford forward Joshua King has recovered from a knee injury but Kiko Femenia is a doubt.

    Francisco Sierralta, Christian Kabasele and Peter Etebo are definitely unavailable.

    Who makes your Everton team this weekend?

    Pick and share your Watford XI here

  15. Watford 0-5 Liverpool: Fantasy football top performers, published at12:07 22 October

    Alistair Bruce-Ball's Fantasy Football Tips - banner

    Liverpool thrashed Watford 5-0 at Vicarage Road in the latest round of Premier League fixtures - but who were the top fantasy football performers from the match?

    Unsurprisingly, the bonus points all went to Liverpool players:

    • Roberto Firmino (3)

    • Mohamed Salah (2)

    • James Milner (1)

    So which Watford and Liverpool players - if any - should be making it into your team for gameweek nine? Don't forget this week's deadline is 18:30 BST on Friday before Arsenal face Aston Villa.

    Read Alistair Bruce-Ball's fantasy football tips to find out

    And listen to the Fantasy 606 podcast on BBC Sounds

  16. Sarr standout player for Hornets so far, published at11:15 22 October

    Ismaila Sarr has had 26% of Watford’s total shots in the Premier League this season (20/76), the highest ratio of any player in the competition so far this term
  17. Premier League fixtures at a glance, published at10:41 22 October

    Premier League fixtures: Arsenal v Aston Villa (Fri, 20:00 BST), Chelsea v Norwich (Sat, 12:30 BST), Crystal Palace V Newcastle (Sat, 15:00 BST), Everton v Watford (Sat, 15:00 BST), Leeds v Wolves (Sat, 15:00 BST), Southampton v Burnley (Sat, 15:00 BST), Brighton v Man City (Sat, 17:30 BST), Brentford v Leicester (Sun, 14:00 BST), West Ham v Tottenham (Sun, 14:00 BST), Man Utd v Liverpool (Sun, 16:30 BST)
  18. Watford's £8m loan pending Udinese payments, published at08:50 22 October

    Simon Stone, BBC Sport

    An interesting financial announcement was made around Watford yesterday.

    They have borrowed £8.075m from MacQuarie Bank as an advance on money owed to them by Udinese.

    Presumably this will be connected either to the transfers of Roberto Pereyra, Gerard Deulofeu, Isaac Success or Ignacio Pussetto, who has returned to Italy on loan. Those clubs do a lot of business together.

    Watford and Udinese have the same owners.

  19. Ranieri - 'I want a reaction' after Reds rout, published at16:12 21 October

    Claudio Ranieri makes a point to his playersImage source, Getty Images

    Watford manager Claudio Ranieri has demanded a reaction from his players following the 5-0 defeat by Liverpool when they face Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday.

    Ranieri, who turned 70 on Wednesday, took charge of his first game as Hornets boss against the Reds but says the display "wasn't the true Watford".

    He believes he has seen positive signs after working with his players this week, having only had two days with them before the Liverpool fixture.

    “The mood is very good, they work very well during the week," said the Italian. "Of course they aren’t happy, they know we played very badly against Liverpool. I am the first to recognise that, but we have to react and show our best.

    “Every time I talk to my players it’s important the feeling between me and them. I will give them all of my experience and all of my support. It’s not important if they make mistakes because everyone makes mistakes, but it’s important how you react. I want to see how they react against Everton.

    “This week I worked well with all my players and day-by-day they understand my idea about football better."

    The Hornets have failed to win any of their last three matches in the Premier League and sit 16th in the table.

    Read more from Ranieri and other Premier League managers in our live page.