Pearson: “We've Got To Be At Our Best”

By: Kevin Affleck

Nigel Pearson has total faith in his players and is unwavering in his belief that they possess the ability and desire to take advantage of the fact their Premier League fate remains in their own hands.

The Hornets can move four points clear of the bottom three with a much-needed win over Norwich City on Tuesday evening and inflict some scoreboard pressure on Bournemouth and Aston Villa who do not play until Thursday.

“I look at our players in training, look in their eyes and I get lots of positive signals back,” said the Head Coach.

“We just have to back ourselves and keep calm about it. We've got to perform and find ways of winning games. If that means winning ugly, I don't care. It's about getting enough results.

“There is a desire to improve upon our performances and results, for sure. The important thing is to get the balance right between being calm and recognising the necessity to perform and pick points up.”

The Hornets were virtually dead and buried when Pearson inherited the team in December. They were rock bottom, had nine points from 17 games and were three points adrift of Norwich City. Now they have engineered a situation in which they find themselves seven points clear of the Canaries, out of the drop zone, albeit by a point, and in charge of their own destiny.

“We understand our situation and it's important that we don't fear it,” said Pearson.

“We've placed ourselves in a more realistic position than we were at one point in the season. It's now about being able to perform in a way that gives us the best chance. Do I believe in ourselves and that we have good players? Yes.

“The players are really keen to improve our current form. We need to show fighting spirit and also show the ability to still make good decisions and play as well as we can. The most important thing is we have unity on the pitch and that will be key for us.”

Norwich have won just once in 11 league games, losing the last six on the bounce and scoring just one goal, but Pearson is well aware of his own team's poor form and will only have to ask the players about the searching examination the Canaries gave them in the 2-0 win at Carrow Road in November.

“We've got to be at our best and we can't underestimate the fact that they have got some good players,“ he said.

“As an attacking force they are quite creative. They don't have the visible pressure but it's still mathematically possible [for them to get out of it] so you can't underestimate anybody.

“We have a healthy respect for them but, for me, it's about what we do ourselves. It's important for us to get the performance right and build on some positive things from the other night.”

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