First Team 1 month ago

Pearson: “We Intend To Pay Back The Fans”

By Kevin Affleck

Nigel Pearson is right up for the challenge of changing the team's fortunes, believing it was a no-brainer to accept the offer of taking charge of the Hornets after he received a call out of the blue last week.

The Head Coach was out on one of his favoured walks in Derbyshire towards the back end of last week when he was sounded out about his interest in taking charge of the Premier League club. Such was Pearson's keenness to coach the Golden Boys and manage again in the top flight of English football, talks progressed quickly and by Friday night, he was installed as the club's 41st Head Coach or Manager.

“The important thing for me is how unique of an opportunity it is,” said the 56-year-old. “This is a great chance to get back in and re-establish myself. There’s no doubt in my mind that our players have the capability to produce results which are better certainly than we’ve got so far. People talk about sides that are possibly too good to be in a relegation dog fight. We are where we are because we have not been able to produce the types of performances that have earned us enough points so far. My job is to try and rectify that or help the players to get a level of organisation and belief in them that we are capable of competing. That’s the priority at the moment. Not to have the broad overview of the place, but to try and affect what’s happening on the pitch as quick as possible.”

Pearson has experience of masterminding or even helping escape acts, whether it be at Carlisle (1998/99), West Bromwich Albion (2004/05) or Leicester City (2014/15). He gathered the entire training ground staff in the canteen at the training ground this morning and delivered a rousing speech, one where he underlined the value of togetherness, unity, discipline and hard work.

“It's crucial [everyone is together],” said Pearson. “Not everybody’s roles are as visible, but, if we're honest, it’s about players being able to go out there and perform. They’re the ones that win the points on the pitch but there’s a bigger picture and whatever role people have within a football club, it’s about them doing what they do as well as they can and it goes for all of us. To create a reality of togetherness, you can’t force it. It’s got to have a bit of substance to it. I can’t do it by myself. I’m as reliant on the people I work with as anybody else. I believe in respecting other people’s roles and we all have a job to do so let’s do it as well as we can.”

Pearson was at Vicarage Road on Saturday and watched the goalless draw with Crystal Palace. He said a few words to the players in the dressing room before the game and was then introduced to the fans on the pitch.

“I was incredibly touched by it to be honest,” he said. “The reception was very warm and felt very, very genuine. All I can say is that we intend to pay back the goodwill and faith our fans have for our football club. The Head Coach and players are all visitors. When you’re a fan of a football club, it’s in you. We’ve got to make sure our football team plays with a commitment and a conviction that our fans are proud of. I can’t say too much more than that because it’s very easy to talk in terms of style of play. We need to win games however we can. It’s about trying to find ways to win. Fans would expect us to show absolute commitment. That’s a value I always hold as expected from myself and people around me.”

Keep out an eye out for the full interview with the new Head Coach coming soon on our social media channels.

First Team 1 month ago

Capoue: “The Fans Were Incredible”

Étienne Capoue was disappointed the team didn't manage to reward the unwavering support of the fans with that first home league win of the season yesterday, but is comforted by the role they look like playing in this escape act.

The home crowd got right behind the team from the minute new Head Coach Nigel Pearson was introduced to the crowd, carried on when Hayden Mullins was thanked pre-match for his interim stewardship of the team and then stayed behind at the end to applaud the team off for a performance that could be described as nothing less than wholehearted.

“First of all, I’m frustrated we couldn’t take three points and we couldn’t score,” said Capoue. “The fans were incredible and it felt like we are not bottom of the league. I think it was good and the fans didn’t give us the feeling like we will go down, which was really good and we need this every game and we need to keep this feeling because they really deserve it.

“Every time we try to attack or counter attack we feel the fans straight away. You get a push more than usual. I know the fans here. I’ve been here four years, this is my fifth year. I know the crowd will always be outstanding so I am not surprised by these very good fans.”

Capoue was pumped yesterday and it bodes well he was so animated at full-time, demonstrating he plans to lead the fight in this bid to get out of trouble.

“I think we created a lot today, maybe not enough of clear situations,” he said. “We just need to keep going because we know it’s just one dribble, extra touch or extra pass. It’s just about one small thing but if we keep going it’s going to change. We take a point sometimes but it is only one. We just need to work to get a lucky game to put us the other side and start winning games.”