Silva | “It Is A Good Situation”

Watford's deadline day signings have not arrived just to make up the numbers – they've come to provide genuine competition for a place in the Golden Boys' increasingly competitive squad.

That is the verdict of Head Coach Marco Silva, who saw Marvin Zeegelaar, Orestis Karnezis and Molla Wagué all arrive on August 31 to add ballast and depth to his 25-man Premier League roster. The arrival of Zeegelaar was particularly welcome as the Dutchman now gives Silva two senior options for the left-back spot.

“It's good news,” said the Head Coach, speaking at yesterday's press conference.

“In that left-back position we now have Marvin who starts to work with us. It is clear in the last match that we had a problem with the suspension of Holebas and we had to play a centre back there.” 

Zeegelaar comes with a fine pedigree, having started his career at Ajax and, more recently, played against Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid in the Champions League. He's not, says Silva, come just to sit on the bench. 

“It's a good and normal situation,”  said Silva. "It is the best situation for the club, for me and for José. It is normal to have two players competing for this position. I want José every day to work hard to keep his position and I want Marvin to work very hard to fight for the position.” 

Zeegelaar signed from Sporting Lisbon on a four-year deal

In signing Karnezis from Udinese, Silva has also replicated the rivalry at left-back in between the sticks. Karnezis is the No 1 for Greece and has more than 40 caps to his name. Recently, Dino Zoff, who knows a thing or two about the art of goalkeeping, felt the now 32-year-old was the best keeper in Serie A.

“No 2 is your words, not mine,”  said Silva, when asked by the media if Karnezis has been recruited as a back-up keeper.

“We don't sign players to be No 1 or No 2. We sign players to play for Watford. It is then my decision to decide if they play in the first XI or not. It is the same situation with the goalkeepers as it is with the strikers. We sign players because they are ready to play.” 

The fiercely competitive Gomes is unlikely to give up his place without a fight. His confidence is bound to be sky high after he registered his 50th Premier League clean sheet in the 0-0 draw with Brighton.  

“That is a very good number,”  said Silva.

“He has started the season very well. He works well and hard every day. He's an experienced keeper and he does very good things during the game. I want him in a good mood, ready to play every game. We are very happy with him and Daniel [Bachmann].” 

Greek goalkeeper Karnezis arrived on a season-long loan

Squad numbers have now been confirmed for the Hornets' three new signings:

Wagué 13
Zeegelaar 22
Karnezis 30

First Team 04/09/2017

Update | Zárate In Hornets' Squad

Watford FC can confirm that Mauro Zárate has been included in the Hornets' 25-man Premier League squad. 

The club's request to amend its original squad was approved by the Premier League Board, after Nordin Amrabat's loan move to Leganés was completed in line with the Spanish Football Federation's transfer deadline on Friday evening.