The 2017/18 seasons began with such high hopes for the Hornets under new manager Marco Silva. However, in similar fashion to the their previous 2 premier league campaigns, Watford came out the blocks flying and petered off after the busy winter period. Javi Gracia took charge of the Hornets in January and struggled with an injury hit squad. With a few decent summer additions and a full pre-season behind them, the Hornets will hope they can sustain good form and challenge for a top half finish.
STAR MAN – Gerard Deulofeu (£5.5m)
After signing on loan from Barcelona in January, Deulofeu showed that he has the potential to be a special player, injecting electric pace, agility and flair into a (then) lethargic Watford side. However, after picking up an injury and being unable to make much of an impact in the later parts of the season, Deulofeu re-joins the hornets for a fee of £11.5m. With him being almost certain to start each game on the right of a 4231 formation, the Spanish winger has the potential to provide both goals and assists for the cheap price of only 5.5m.
HIDDEN GEM – Will Hughes (£5.0m)
Similar to that of Deulofeu, Will Hughes’ first season at Watford was one that was struck and hindered by injuries. However, when fit, Hughes showed glimpses of magic, providing 2 goals and 3 assists with limited minutes. If fit, Hughes is almost certain to start either centrally or on the left of a midfield 3, and could prove pivotal to Watford’s attacking threat. Priced at just 5.0m and owned by just 0.4%, Will Hughes is a perfect 5th midfielder option and could prove quite the differential.
BARGAIN – Adam Masina (£4.5m)
Watford’s new left back signed from Bologna in the summer and arrives with high expectations. Left back proved a weakness for Watford last season, with Jose Holebas and Marvin Zeegelaar both performing below par. The hornets will hope that Masina can fill that void and prove to be a solid full back across the course of the season. Masina is a tall, ball-playing full back with an eye for a pass and one who likes to get forward at every opportunity. Watford have picked up a couple of good defensive reinforcements in the transfer window, and certainly have the potential for clean sheet points. Masina could therefore prove to be a bargain at only 4.5m. Another option is Watford’s right-back, Kiko Femenia, who is also priced at 4.5m and has the potential for high point returns.
PREDICTED LINE UP
Femenia, Cathcart, Kabasele, Masina
Deulofeu, Hughes, Pereyra
Written by Jack (@jaeton_)