First Team 23/02/2018

Holebas | “We Have To Do Something In This Game”

José Holebas has been speaking to the broadcast media – in his own typically forthright fashion –  ahead of tomorrow’s match against Everton.

Despite a downturn in form over the festive period, the former Greek international believes the Hornets must have a positive mental attitude in the final third of the season.

He said: “The mood is always good here. I know everyone is a little bit angry about the last two months because we struggled a little bit, but the only thing we can do is work on it and look forward.

“The new manager is doing his best now in keeping the mood up and is working really well.”

Holebas is also his own harshest critic, and admits that while he may have struggled to live up to his own high standards a little recently, he’s well on his way to being back to his best.

“I criticise myself a lot, even if I’ve played a good game,” he said. “I could be better. I started well this season, but my performance went down a little bit. I have to find my performance again, but I think I will find it really soon. I’m in good shape and feeling good.”

The full-back, who has a rocket of a left-foot thanks to starting his career as a striker, agrees that he let his emotions boil over in the reverse fixture back in November.

“We have to do something in this game [on Saturday]. When we played there [at Goodison], we were 2-0 up and gave the game away in that way – it is unacceptable for me.

“I was a little bit emotional because I know that this season we have lost some points [from winning positions].”

He wears his heart on his sleeve, what you see is what you get, but Holebas is wary of setting any targets for the rest of the season – he just wants to take it game-by-game.

He said: “We have some pressure from below, but that’s not what we want because we started really well this season. If you count the games where we were playing really well and lost, we would be in the top seven. That makes me a little bit angry, and that is something we should change.

“We have to work from game to game and not watch what other clubs are doing. You have to win your games, if you do that it doesn’t matter what the other clubs are doing.”

The Ticket Office will be open from 10am on Saturday ahead of the 5.30pm kick-off time.

First Team 23/02/2018

Home & Away | Everton


Saturday August 28, 1982, First Division
Vicarage Road

Luther Blissett takes on his man against Everton

It was Watford’s first game in the old First Division. Graham Taylor’s men took their first steps on the way to finishing as runners-up with two goals from two Northern Irishmen and a clean sheet.

Gerry Armstrong tapped in from close range in the 21st minute, before a mistake from Neville Southall allowed Pat Rice to score his first and only goal for Watford in the second-half.

The goalkeeper caught the ball from Rice’s free-kick and stepped backward over the line, and between the referee and the linesman the goal was given.

Hornets XI: Sherwood (GK), Rice, Jackett, Bolton, Rostron, Callagahan (Taylor), Lohman, Blissett, Barnes, Armstrong, Jenkins.

Toffees XI: Southall (GK), Borrows, Higgins, Wright, Bailey, King, McMahon (Richardson), Sheedy, Heath, Johnson, Sharp.

Neville Southall carries the ball over the line for Watford's second goal


Saturday August 8, 2015, Premier League
Goodison Park

Layún celebrates opening the Hornets' Premier League account in 2015

We come full circle – this was the first game of the Golden Boys’ Premier League campaign under Quique Sanchez Flores.

Miguel Layún opened Watford’s account for the season, scoring on the half-volley. Everton then equalised through Ross Barkley, but the Hornets pushed on and found another goal in the shape of Odion Ighalo, performing his trademark scoop and bamboozling John Stones and Phil Jagielka before slotting the ball into the back of the net.

Arouna Kone levelled the game just three minutes later to deny Watford an opening day win, but the Hornets' faithful went home happy after a spirited showing at Goodison.

Toffees XI: Howard (GK); Coleman, Stones, Jagielka, Galloway (Koné, 63); McCarthy, Barry; Mirallas (Oviedo, 77), Barkley, Cleverley; Lukaku (Naismith, 90+1).

Hornets XI: Gomes (GK); Nyom, Prödl, Cathcart, Holebas; Capoue, Behrami (Watson, 79); Anya, Layún (Paredes, 59), Jurado (Ighalo, 74); Deeney.

Ighalo performs his trademark celebration after netting the Golden Boys' second of the afternoon