Watford v CHELSEA: Preview

Date: Saturday 20th August, 2016
Venue: Vicarage Road
Kick-off: 15:00 BST

This afternoon’s game sees up travel to Vicarage Road to take on Watford.
Our first game of the season Monday night was harder than it should have. We were head and shoulders the better side against West Ham in a game with more than one controversial decision. Positives for us from that game, besides 3 points, were performances from Hazard and Kante on the pitch and the performance off the pitch from new boss Antonio Conte.
Watford put in a decent first shift against Southampton in their opening game to secure themselves a point, and with today’s managerial opponents hardly the best of friends, we can probably expect everything to be thrown at this one as well.

MANAGER’S VIEWS
Going into today’s game, Watford boss Walter Mazzarri, says “Friendship is a very important concept, I respect Conte as a person and a manager. I respect him a lot but friendship is a lot, its another thing. Of course we will shake hands, we even shook hands at the meeting of the managers at the start of the season. There is no problem but again for me friendship is very important. I have just a few friends.”
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte meanwhile, says “I saw (Mazzarri) in the managers’ meeting. I spoke with him about this new experience, this is a great challenge also for him. When we were in Italy and we fought for the title, Juventus against Napoli, yeah (there was a fall-out), but when you stay up and you are fighting for the title everyone fights for their club. But the relationship is very normal, I have great respect for him and his work. I think he’s a good manager.”

SQUAD NEWS
For Watford, Brice Dja Djedje and Isaac Success are injured and Ben Watson misses out through suspension.
For Chelsea, Zouma remains injured and Jon Obi Mikel is on international duty but Conte has no new injury concerns.

TEAMS
WATFORD (Possible line-up): Gomes; Cathcart, Prodl, Britos; Amrabat, Guedioura, Behrami, Capoue, Holebas; Deeney, Ighalo
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Courtois, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta, Kante, Willian, Oscar, Matic, Hazard, Costa

LAST SEASON
Watford 0-0 Chelsea (3rd February 2016)

OTHER STUFF
~ Watford’s only win in the last 15 league and cup meetings came at home 17 years ago
~ Watford have only had four wins and 17 points from 21 matches since Boxing Day.
~ Watford’s only home win in the last seven was in April 2016.
~ Chelsea have taken 20 points from away games in 2016
~ Antonio Conte has lost just one of his last 31 league games as a club manager

PREDICTIONS
101 great goals: Watford 0-2 Chelsea
Football Talk: Watford 1-2 Chelsea
Sports Mole: Watford 0-2 Chelsea’

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