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New boss: Javi Gracia has been appointed Hornets’ manager

New boss: Javi Gracia has been appointed Hornets’ manager

New boss: Javi Gracia has been appointed Hornets’ manager

Javi Gracia has been appointed as Watford's new manager following the dismissal of Marco Silva.

Silva, who joined the Hornets from Hull only last summer, was given his marching orders by the club's hierarchy yesterday after Watford's 2-0 defeat at Leicester.

Gracia, the 47-year-old Spaniard, replaces Silva after he agreed an 18-month contract at Vicarage Road. His first game in charge will be against Southampton in the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup at St Mary's Stadium on Saturday.

Gracia, the former Malaga and Rubin Kazan head coach, is the 10th manager to be appointed by the Pozzo family since their takeover at Watford in 2012.

Gracia, who has been out of work since he departed Russian club Rubin Kazan last June, will take the reins of a Watford squad which has won just one of their last 11 matches in the Premier League.

Silva enjoyed a strong start to his tenure at the Hertfordshire club, winning six of his opening 13 league games, but his side's form dipped following an approach by Everton after they sacked Ronald Koeman.

"(The approach) is something which the board believes has seen a significant deterioration in both focus and results to the point where the long-term future of Watford FC has been jeopardised," a club statement said.

"For the security and success of the football club, the board believes it has to make a change."

Belfast Telegraph