Deeney: “The Pressure Is On For Me To Keep Delivering”
By Kevin Affleck
Troy Deeney is hungry for more after moving level with Ross Jenkins in the list of the club's all-time league goalscorers.
The one the captained slammed in at the Vitality Stadium in the 65th minute was his eighth in 12 games against Bournemouth, his fourth in his last five games and his 118th for the club in the league. It moved him level with Jenkins, and now only Tommy Barnett (144) and Luther Blissett (148) sit above him.
“I'm closing in,” said Deeney on Added Time. “The pressure is on for me to keep delivering. You can't just do it in little patches. That's seven games back for me now and four goals. Performances will take care of the goals. I'm putting myself about and the gaffer demands it off me. He makes sure I'm still working, still running, still putting my body on the line. I'm working as hard as I can and as smart as I can. I had a couple of days [off this week] to rest the knee and it paid dividends.”
Deeney sets the standards around the place and is Pearson's on-field lieutenant, helping to enforce and reiterate the message the energised coaching staff are trying to spread across the whole of the training ground.
“You can look and identify lots of different things [behind the turnaround] but look at the lads coming off the bench,” he said. “Maxi [Pereyra] is tracking back in the bottom corner and then getting his goal. Andre [Gray] is trying to get his goal, Domingos [Quina] is coming on and doing the dirty stuff well. It's about a mindset and when you come in now, you can't just coast through games. The boys are putting in a high level of work rate and you've got to match that. When you step on and wear a Watford shirt, you have to match these standards.”
Deeney has been at this place for ten years and his iconic status is already assured, but he knows that doesn't allow him an arm-chair ride. It's why he was charging around like a 20-year-old at the Vitality Stadium and setting the tone from the front.
“If I'm not doing it right then they are going to let me know the same way I let them know,” he said. “That's the challenge I like. It's a winning feeling. The lads were hammering me in there (the dressing room) because in the 87th or 88th minute I did this big sprint back and they were asking where that came from. I don't know, I genuinely don't know but I've got that enthusiasm and hunger to not only win games, but keep the energy [high] and show the other boys that, even at 31, I can still contribute and be more than a bit-part player.”
Watch how the captain recovered over three months out with a knee injury picked up in the summer in Troy Deeney: Injury Rehab Revealed.
Our 35-minute documentary covers every minute of the number nine's journey, from visits to the doctor and the first gym sessions back to training with the Under-23s and finally returning to the pitch...