First Team 14/05/2019

Deeney: “I'll Get To Introduce The Team To Royalty”

Troy Deeney never thought he would have the chance to meet royalty – but the Watford captain could have the opportunity to introduce his side to Prince William on Saturday.

The Duke of Cambridge is set to attend this weekend’s FA Cup final between the Hornets and Manchester City and will meet both teams prior to kick-off before awarding the trophy to the winner.

Deeney, who had a challenging upbringing in Chelmsley Wood, has become a key figure for the Golden Boys and admitted the chance to meet the Prince is one of a number of little details that have brought the magnitude of Saturday’s match to the fore.

However, the 30-year-old is bullish about Watford’s chances too, saying the Hornets “didn’t get called out for a lucky ticket” to be in the final.

The skipper insists Javi Gracia’s side have earned the right to face City after a thrilling cup run that has seen Woking, Newcastle United, Queens Park Rangers, Crystal Palace and Wolverhampton Wanderers all swept aside.

After a record-breaking season for the Golden Boys in the Premier League, there is now just one game remaining in the 2018/19 season – and it’s the biggest and most highly-anticipated one of all.

“Only in the last 10 days or so has it started to sink in what it really means,” said Deeney.

“I'm from low income housing and we don't get to meet royalty and if I'm starting I'll get to introduce my team to royalty.

“I've been involved in every game in some way. There's going to be a good showing back home from my lot. I want to show it's not a one-off.

“Tactically, Javi will have us spot on but the biggest thing this season has been the fitness. Yes, there's the odd injury here and there but he'll know what to do and for him it's about enjoying it as well.

“He's been great – he’s a lovely human being. He never comes out and talks about what he did. It's always what the players did.

“We didn't get called out for a lucky ticket from a raffle to play in the final against City, we earned it.

“We understand what we need to do, and we've got the quality to score goals.

“We’re not little old Watford any more - we’re becoming a team others don't want to play.”

Saturday may also mark the end of Heurelho Gomes’ time at the club after five successful seasons with the Hornets, after the Brazilian admitted he is “99 per cent certain” he's hanging up his gloves.

Deeney is grateful to have shared the pitch and the dressing room with the fan favourite and thinks there may be a touch of fate about this cup run.

“He's not just a great goalkeeper, he's a great human being,” he added. “He inspires me to be a better person because of how he is.

“We had a moment after Crystal Palace [in the quarter-final] where he was caught on camera crying, and you just think it might be his moment of destiny.”

Under-23's 14/05/2019

Under-23: Crichlow Signs On

Bermuda youth international Kane Crichlow has agreed to sign for the Hornets’ Under-23s on a two-year contract.

The 18-year-old forward arrives from AFC Wimbledon on July 1, 2019 after a successful trial and will join up with Watford’s development squad ahead of the start of the 2019/20 season.

Speaking to watfordfc.com, Crichlow – a Bermuda Under-20 international who has also captained his country’s Under-17s and Under-15s – said: “I’m very excited. It’s always been a dream of mine since I was young to sign for a team that’s in the Premier League.

“I’m really excited that it’s finally come true and over the summer I’m going to be doing a lot of work in the gym and training with my national team to make sure I’m ready for pre-season.”

Academy Manager Richard Thomas added: “Kane has shown great attitude combined with top technical quality in his time with us so far, which suggests to us that he can go a long way.

“He’s a very talented player on the ball, he can play off both sides and use both feet very well and he can finish, so we’re expecting him to be very dangerous in the top third of the pitch.

“I’ve seen in the short time I’ve been here that we’ve got some really good players in the building already, so adding to that will freshen up the group and create some more competition, which can only bode well for the Under-23s and the rest of the Academy going forward.”