First Team 1 month ago

FA Cup Final: Fans Present Banner To Hornets

A giant banner containing more than 1,300 good luck messages from supporters spanning over 100 countries has been presented to Watford’s players ahead of this weekend’s FA Cup final. 

Just as they did before the play-off finals in 1999, 2006 and 2013, a group of Hornets fans got together to organise the banner, asking supporters from across the world to send in their messages.

Leo Mindel, Frances Lynn, David Hyams, Simon Wheeler and Jon Sinclair visited the London Colney training ground today (Monday) to hand the banner over to members of the playing and coaching staff as preparations ramp up for the club’s second ever FA Cup final.

Speaking to watfordfc.com, Leo said: “The idea started in 1999 when we did our first banner for the play-off final and we’ve repeated it a number of times since, however this one has exceeded anything we’ve done before in terms of size.

“We’ve had responses from all over the world, including Portugal, South Africa, Zimbabwe, USA and Brazil, with messages of congratulations and some very personal messages from people who have followed the team for many years.

“A lot of the team involved in organising this have been supporting Watford for a very long time – the majority of us were there 35 years ago – so to see the team today and to see the look on their faces has been excellent.”

Ladies 1 month ago

Ladies: Baranowska Will Be Missed

By Chris Smith

It’s safe to say that Weronika Baranowska impressed many in the 2018/19 campaign, with several fine performances throughout the season.

With that in mind, it’s no surprise that opportunities have opened up for the keeper. She’ll be moving to the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, where she’ll be representing the Pacific Tigers.

It meant that the final game against Plymouth was her last appearance for Watford, and she ended on a winning note.

“It’s always good to get the win. I’m delighted to have got the last three points with the team and to have ended the season on a high,” Baranowska told watfordfc.com.

“We reacted well after they came back into it. They started playing attacking football and we responded, managing to hold on to the result until the end of the game.

“It was very emotional for me. This has been my third season with Watford, and in that time all the staff and players have become family to me. I will forever be grateful for all the chances and opportunities they’ve given and placed in front of me at such a young age.”

While the keeper will soon be looking forward to a new beginning, how does she reflect on the campaign just gone?

“I feel it’s been a season of ups and downs, but overall, I think it was successful,” she explained. “We obviously started very well but hit a rough patch about half-way through, luckily we managed to pick ourselves up and finish the season just like we started it.

“The highlight from the campaign would have to be our game against Manchester City, both from an individual and team perspective. We went into that game as massive underdogs with a point to prove, and we did exactly that.

“Not conceding for 60 minutes of the game against such a strong opponent says a lot about our character and solidarity. On top of that, I feel it was a very good performance from myself, definitely my best of the season.

“I feel like I have come a long way since the start of the season, which is mainly because of the game time opportunities that have been given to me. The best way to learn and progress is through learning from mistakes and working on them in training, with the help of all the coaching staff, I feel like I’ve achieved that.”

When August comes around, Weronika will be in a new environment at the University of the Pacific, as she looks to showcase her talents across the pond.

“Watford have played a massive part in getting me this opportunity,” said Baranowska. “They have given me the perfect platform for development and allowed me to grow both on and off the pitch, all I can do is thank them for believing in me and pushing me to always be the best version of myself.

“I’m beyond excited for this new challenge. It’s always been a dream of mine and to finally be able to pursue it at such a great university is amazing. I’m hoping that during the four years I can further progress my abilities with the help of the coaches.

“I’m really hoping this move can help my international career also. I plan on working hard throughout my time there, so that all the progress I’ve made here doesn’t go to waste. Hopefully when I get called back up, it’ll be to the senior team!”

Finally, is there anything the keeper will miss when August comes around, and she’s over 5,000 miles away from Kings Langley?

“I don’t think there’s much explaining needed in this one, it’s about time I catch some sun!” Baranowska joked. “The team will always have a very big place in my heart though, and I’ll definitely miss them.”