Date: 1st December 2017 at 8:41am
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The distance from Wembley to Watford is around 11 miles; the distance between Tottenham and Watford is three points; a home win for Watford by 10 goals will put them in seventh and we’d drop to eighth.

I can confidently predict that’s not going to happen, I cannot so confidently predict us winning.

Watford under their highly rated and sought after manager Marco Silva have been playing some of the best attacking exciting football in the whole of the Premier League, and the results have followed accordingly, but their preference for attack has also cost them dear against better teams.

The Hornets will be coming into this game after playing well, but losing 2-4 to Manchester United in midweek, 3-0 down they recovered to 3-2 and were pressing high and hard before conceding a 4th late on.

Earlier on in the season they lost 0-6 to ManCity, it was a salutary experience and Silva has worked hard since then to get the whole teams closing down and workrate to a higher level, in many respects his impact and his methods of improved fitness along with a high pressing workrate mirrors Pochs’ early impact.

But they also now have their injury problems with the highly rated Isaac Success, Nathaniel Chalobah, ex-Spur Younes Kaboul, Will Hughes, Craig Cathcart, and Tommie Hoban all out, and its doubtful Kiko Femenia and Miguel Britos will be fit for selection.

As so often happens, these injuries have brought about a chance pairing that’s been looking strong and it will be here that they’ll be looking to impose their game on us.

The pairing of Abdoulaye Doucoure and Tom Cleverley in central midfield is a strong one, Cleverly has really started to getting back to his best which once had Fergie saying he was the best CM’er in the PL; he has been on a bad journey since those days, but is probably now playing some of the best football of his life.

Both work hard to run beyond the defence and get into the box when they attack down the flanks; we’ll have a real battle on our hands to keep them quiet.

As for us, the good news is Winks will be back, Lamela could possibly start depending on how he came out of his re-appearance as Eriksen is clearly desperately in need of some respite, but the odds are Poch will think this is a game we must not lose and its too much of a gamble to play Lamela from the start, but could and should replace him with Song.

Watford are a physical side, I expect to see Dembele and Winks in midfield with Dembo playing a more withdrawn role, Dembele is still trying to find his form, which so far this season has eluded him.

A draw here is a minimum, a win would be a big shot in the arm, the corresponding game last season ended in a 1-4 win for us; I can’t see that happening this time, although I do expect the game to produce goals, it may only be a score draw unless Harry is back to his best and we are far more ruthless in front of goal and take our chances and don’t miss 3 or 4 clear cut chances as we did against Leicester.

We have not lost to Watford since they’ve been in the Premier league winning 6 and drawing two; now is not the time to do so, a loss to Watford would make a ‘difficult moment’ into a full blown crisis and hopes of securing a top 4 finish would take a huge blow, if not be another mission impossible, just as winning the league now is.

Poch has a couple of tough choices to make at left and right wing back, but given his recent rotations, I expect Trippier and Davies to start with a back three of Dier, Sanchez and Vert. A midfield of Dembele and Winks with a front three of Eriksen (should be Song, but we will see), Alli and Kane.

Tottenham should be playing like they have a point to prove, if they don’t and we start slowly or concede early, chances are our heads will drop and this could be another long disappointing game.


93 Replies to “Watford v Tottenham Preview”

  • Given our current difficulty and slump in form, this will be a very difficult game. Watford are over performing this season, they are very very well organised by an exciting young manager, play as a team, and have no prima donnas, just honest pros playing their hearts out. If we do come unstuck in yet another home game there will undoubtedly be some serious questions asked. It will be interesting to see whether the gate figures will hold up to recent levels.

  • don’t play 3 at the back, its not working at the moment. The quality of the crosses into the box is not good. Play 4 at the back; Trippier and Davies Sanchez and Verts. Sanchez doesn’t look comfortable playing on the right of a back 3 and Dier has lost his geography playing in the centre. He lost Vardy on Tuesday he lost Martial at United, both goals should never have happened. Put Dier in front of the back four don’t start Moussa bring him on later when the pace of the game slows down, the Mousse has lost a yard since his last injury, he’ll just lose the ball and then foul a player trying to get it back, play Winks Box to Box. Put Son in on the right leave Dele on the bench to come on for Son, bring Rose in at Left wing to give some pace to the left hand side, let Rose play in front of Davies so Davies can concentrate shutting down the left of the pitch it worked against Real Madrid! Play Lamela for 60 minutes to do what Eriksen should be doing but, above all, press Watford, don’t give them space in the middle of the park, break up their play and get them on the counter, their not as good defending as they are going forward, we need a solid back 5 that doesn’t lose its shape, we were too open against Leicester, we are shipping too many silly goals. Watford will start fast so we have to make good tackles and break up their rhythm. Winks can carry the ball and turn defence into attack and with Son and Rose out wide we can use Lamela as the pivot and it will gave Harry the chance to roam the corridor of uncertainty in front of Gomez who always panics when faced with; “should he come out or stay on his line”! when he comes out he’s a penalty waiting to happen! Harry needs to be in the box not going back to get the ball and looking for work Lamela has the nous to use the slide ball Winks has the engine to get the ball to outside the area with Rose and Son making runs Watford cant put everyone on to Kane and Harry only needs half a chance. Its back to basics Poch for this, and the next 2 games, we have to go to Man City on the 16th December with 3 victories under our belt. City aren’t invincible it took a last gasp goal against Bournemouth and Southampton to get the 3 points but we have to, have to win our next 3 games, ugly or smart it doesn’t matter, its the hard yards part of the season and we have to play the players who can roll their sleeves up and concentrate in a shape that they are comfortable in and then go back to 3 at the back when Alders and Wanya are back. COYS!

  • I too consider a 4-2-3-1, but I’ve convinced myself that Poch won’t abandon the 3 at the back and is pretty desperate to try and play Dembele back into some sort of form. They will come at us, as they’ll know we’re vulnerable and confidences will be fragile. This game will be about getting a fast start and making sure that we can weather what will probably be a manic first 20 mins by them.

  • Some interesting suggestions above but we all know Poch will play the same formation as the last few games switching the full-backs, replacing Dembele with Winks to allow SIssoko to continue his rich vein of form. IF THIS Is the case then its a home banker 3-0.

  • If we lose to Watford the pressure on Poch will be immense. We have a new stadium that will be ready next year that will require at least 60,000 bums on seats at every match along with CL Football to keep the revenue pouring in. If we finish 5th or worse Poch is going to struggle to hang on to our best players and if we finish with no silverware again this season we’ll be back to having to buy players in to replace the one’s we lose and it will be back to the drawing board. Players don’t give a sh** at the end of the day they just want someone to flash the cash and I can see Verts Alders Alli Rose and Eriksen looking for the exit door if we end up back in the Europa. Now is the time for Poch to pull things around cos you can bet Levy ain’t going to fork out anything substantial in January but you can also bet Levy is enjoying the extra match day revenue the club is getting as well as the TV Money and, has got used to it by now, so he will be as pi$$ed as a sky full of parrots if we take a dip in revenue next season! 14 points behind City is one thing but if we let a gap open up between us and Liverpool or the Gooners then 4th will be a miracle. United Play the Scum this weekend whatever the outcome of that game we can close the gap with a Win at Watford. We have to make Saturday a turning point. We shouldn’t have lost at Leicester, we missed absolute sitters during the game as we did against West Brom and United. Its literally the wrong side of a boot or a post that has got us into this slump, our attitude on Saturday has to be absolutely spot on, no slow start or lacking in ideas so the team Poch picks has to reflect that sense of urgency! Poch has got to change it up if Sissoko gets picked it will show a lack of ambition as will playing Moussa from the start!

  • What has been largely ignored on this site is that this will be the nineteenth game in succession for our boys with just a few days in between, if the internationals are included. The last ten or so have been particularly intense. This must be taking its toll.

    Yes others have had to put up with this ridiculous schedule to some extent. But they have not had the continuous pressures we have experienced and have rotated much more (or have been able to rotate much more) because of the strength of their squads.

    All this means that team selection will have to depend largely on who is the least knackered and who is best back from injury.

    Going through the positions perhaps Lioris could do with a rest, the wing backs should be selected on merit for the game since they have been sufficiently rotated. Dier definitely needs a rest which leaves a back two rather than a back three. Vertongen also needs a break but who is there? Sissoko with all his faults) and Dembele for central midfield since they should be relatively fresh. Eriksen is out on his feet so he should be replaced by Winks. Alli is just not good enough at the moment which means the relatively fresh Son and Lamela sharing this role.and Kane and Liorente up front, with Son taking over from Kane (if he also proves to be not up to it for one reason or another) or from Llorente (if he still proves to be the Llorente of old) when Lamela is ready to come on.

    Complicated I know but we must play our poor hand as best as we can. And there are lots of mid-week games to come!

  • Based on your post Stan, seems everyone needs a rest! I am sure the fans need a rest too, having to put up with such congested fixture list and still being able to find time to post here….or even write a book!

    A tough game in deed. Watford are no longer the pushover of last year and we are no longer the team to fear. Score early against us and draw is the worst you can expect, conversely, we score 1st, 3 points in the bag. However, ain’t got a clue what team and formation Poch’s gonna put out, no doubt there will be an element of WTF on the odd selection! Well, let’s see what Poch’s made of and how we start this game…… please not another lethargic start and a post match interview to bemoan it. I think it will be a close one, 2-1 to either side….. hopefully us. Sorry Geof, the days of 3-0 appear to be history.

  • All bad form has to come to an end soon enough… Why not today?

    I can see an open and entertaining match today and of course, a Spurs win… What else can I say? I’m not one to think that I should ever know better, what the manager or the players need to do, bar score at least one more than the other lot.

    So, whoever plays, whatever the formation, however the stars are aligned, rain or shine, I’m predicting Watford 1-4 Tottenham Hotspur.

  • In fact, I think I might put a couple of quid on it… What have I got to lose? Bar a couple of quid…

  • I wouldn’t want to blame Geof for anything… I’ll just blame my rose-tinted specs and my foolish pride.

  • I was thinking. (And it hurts)! – What if we finish around 7th in the EPL but win the FA cup? Would that be okay? Acceptable?

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