Belfast Telegraph

Watson's warning for Hornets ahead of trip to Stoke

Southampton 1 Watford 0

By Declan Warrington

Watford's trip to Stoke has become the "biggest game of the season", according to midfielder Ben Watson.

On Wednesday in their first Premier League fixture under new head coach Javi Gracia, the Hornets visit fellow strugglers Stoke hoping to arrest the decline that has led to eight defeats from their last 11 league games and contributed to the sacking of Marco Silva.

That they remain in 10th place, seven spots above their next hosts, suggests they are at minimal risk of relegation, but in an unusually-competitive division only eight points separate the bottom 12 teams.

On Saturday at Southampton their supporters booed them off both at half-time of their 1-0 FA Cup fourth round defeat and at the final whistle.

Victory at Stoke would provide the lift they had hoped for from Gracia's appointment, and the 32-year-old Watson said: "For me, for the boys and everyone involved, it is probably the biggest game of the season.

"We can't rely on anyone, and Wednesday is the biggest game of the season.

"If you ask anyone in the Premier League, first and foremost it is about being a Premier League club next year.

"We have to go to Stoke and impose ourselves and we have to make sure we leave nothing on the pitch. Any of 10 teams could go down and we have to make sure we are not one of them."



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