Watson: “It Was An Easy Decision”
Since Ben Watson arrived in Hertfordshire in January 2015 he has been an integral part of the side that first gained promotion from the Championship, and then secured their Premier League status last season as well as reaching an FA Cup semi-final.
With all that in mind, it’s perhaps no surprise that Watson's decision to extend his contract at Vicarage Road was such an easy one to make, with the midfielder committing himself to the Hornets until 2018 over the summer break.
“I’ve had a fantastic year-and-a-half here,” he told the official Watford FC YouTube channel.
“In terms of myself, coming here in the Championship, getting promoted and then playing more or less a full season in the Premier League, I couldn’t have asked for more.
“So I was glad it got sorted sooner rather than later and, as I say, it was an easy decision and I'm looking forward to the next couple of years.”
Watson was almost ever-present in the heart of the midfield last season, appearing 41 times in total as well as striking against both Manchester City and West Bromwich Albion.
Despite his impressive campaign, Watson is still looking to improve this time around and firmly believes new Head Coach Walter Mazzarri is the right man to help him, and the team, progress.
"Pre-season has been really good so far and as a footballer you never stop learning. Last year we had loads of new stuff and new ideas that we learnt and the new manager this year has new ideas as well.
“As a player it’s great because you’re forever learning. The 3-5-2 is something we’ve played before at the club and it was a formation we got promoted with, so it’s a formation a lot of the boys know.
“But with an experienced coach who’s played this formation a lot, he’s obviously got a lot of new ideas and he’s getting those across.”
With the Premier League make-up looking as strong as ever this year, Watson is well aware of the challenges ahead, but the 31-year-old is still targeting an improvement on last season’s finish.
“We did well last year but we’ve got to try and better our final league position and then we will have had a great year,” he said.
“But it’s going to be tough again and it’s a tough league. If you look at the managers that teams have brought in this year, we’ve possibly got six of the top 10 managers in the world now.
“The big boys are going to be really strong and it’s important we compete and look to better last season.”