Watford’s defeat at Wolves on Saturday was their 11th-consecutive Premier League loss, leaving them rooted to the bottom of the table.
A run of poor results saw Watford sack Javi Gracia and replace him with Quique Sanchez Flores.
Flores’s side did show a lot of character and grit from being 2-0 down to draw against Arsenal but following that performance at Vicarage Road, there hasn’t been any improvement—in both performance and result.
The Hornets were given an 8-0 hiding by Manchester City at the Etihad and while they managed a 2-1 win over Swansea City in the Carabao Cup, they were brought down to earth by Wolves last weekend.
Unless Flores can pick up the pieces quickly now, Championship football awaits Watford. If the Spaniard can turn things around, his priority should be to strengthen the defensive options in January.
Watford have the worst defensive record in the Premier League after conceding 20 goals in just seven games. Summer signing Craig Dawson has failed to provide the defensive stability, while the likes of Christian Kabasele, Adrian Mariappa, Craig Cathcart, Jose Holebas and Kiko Femenia have looked completely out of depth.
Defensive reinforcements are an absolute must if the club is to retain their top-flight status. That being said, the Hornets should plot a January swoop for Sassuolo defender Gian Marco Ferrari.
Gian Marco Ferrari, 27, who was linked with Watford earlier this year, has established himself as one of Serie A’s best defenders over the last few years. He played 31 games for Sassuolo in the Serie A last season, scoring a goal, with his excellent passing range and commanding style earning him plenty of admirers.
The Italian defender would bring further competition to centre-backs Mariappa, Dawson, Cathcart, Kabasele and Prodl. Standing at 6’2″, Ferrari is a physically imposing defender who never shies away from throwing his body on the line.
He is also adept at the art of bringing the ball out of defence – a quality which will be admired by Flores who likes his defenders to be brave on the ball.
The former Sampdoria man is a very good reader of the game that helps him cut out the opposition attacks before it grows. As he is left-footed, Ferrari would also bring balance to Watford’s backline.
All in all, Ferrari could be the right man to solve Watford’s defensive woes and thus, Flores shouldn’t hesitate to sign him in January.
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