Watford Won’t Be Hasty Over Gracia’s Future

Watford Won’t Be Hasty Over Gracia’s Future

Watford have had a habit of being quick to dispense of their managers in the past, but the hierarchy will afford current boss Javi Gracia with time. The club’s crazy managerial merry-go-round has resulted in seven different men in the top job in the past five years since Oscar Garcia was replaced by Billy McKinlay after just four games in October 2014.

The Scot only lasted two games before Slavisa Jokanovic was brought in and the Serb even guided Watford to automatic promotion to the Premier League at the end of the 2014-15 season only to leave for pastures new that summer. Quique Sanchez Flores and Walter Mazzarri were in charge for the following two seasons, before Marco Silva lasted half of the 2017-18 campaign before he was shown the door in January.

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Gracia was drafted in to succeed the Portuguese and he has now become the club’s longest-serving boss since Malky Mackay’s reign from 2009-2011. The 49-year-old built on the club’s 14th-place finish at the end of his debut season by progressing to 11th last term while also guiding the Hornets to the FA Cup final, where they were unfortunately well beaten 6-0 by Manchester City.

During the summer, Gracia has brought in experienced defender Craig Dawson for a modest £5million, England international Danny Welbeck on a free transfer and was allowed to smash the club’s transfer record to sign winger Ismaïla Sarr for £35m.

However, a disappointing start to the season – a 3-0 home defeat to Brighton and Saturday’s 1-0 reverse at Everton – has resulted in some suggestions that Watford owner Gino Pozzo and chairman Scott Duxbury already have their fingers hovering over the trigger on past evidence.

But with Welbeck and Sarr yet to really feature and only two games played, there is plenty of time for Gracia and his summer signings to continue to help the club progress this term. Watford’s money men clearly back the Spanish tactician having provided the funds for Sarr and, on this occasion, the precious commodity of time which many managers are not afforded, will be given to Gracia.

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