Why Chris Hughton would be the right man to turn Watford’s fortunes
Sky Sports suggests that former Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton is in pole position to take over the reins at Watford, with Paul Clement also in the frame.
Watford sacked manager Quique Sanchez Flores just 85 days after he was appointed as their manager. Prior to Sanchez Flores’ appointment, fellow countryman Javi Gracia lasted for one season and was also sacked earlier this term.
Since Gianfranco Zola’s exit in December 2013, Watford have had nine managers, including Sanchez Flores twice. And Javi Gracia is the only manager to have lasted a season.
Talking about suitable managers for the Hornets, Chris Hughton has been linked with the club.
Watford’s chances of moving above the relegation zone seem to be bleak at this point and appointing Chris Hughton would, in a way, be effective for the Hornets.
Hughton began his coaching career as the manager of Tottenham’s youth system. He then went on to manage teams like Newcastle, Birmingham and Norwich City before arriving at Brighton in 2014.
The former left-back was at the helm in American Express Community Stadium for 5 years. He led the Seagulls to the Championship play-offs in his first full season.
The next campaign was even more successful as he led Brighton to the Premier League for the first time in the club’s history. It came after they finished 2nd in the Championship. The 2017/18 season saw them finish 17th in the league, thus helping them with top-flight status for another term.
During his time at Brighton, Hughton made some important signings in the likes of Alireza Jahanbahksh, Davy Propper, Martin Montaya, and Pascal Gross. They have continued to perform for the club and have shown promises in their game.
Though Hughton is not known for winning trophies, he has the ability to take a club to a respectable position irrespective of the current shape. The Irishman has a vast experience of managing in the Premier League and Watford can expect him to do well for them.
Hughton turned Brighton into a Premier League team with his favoured formation of 4-4-2. This season, Watford have mostly played with a flat 3-5-2 formation and were unproductive up front. This would change if Hughton comes in, as he prefers a strong midfield option that can support the attack as well.
The 60-year-old also worked wonders at Newcastle United as he won the Championship and got them promoted back to the Premier League. He has proved to be a great manager for clubs in the lower echelons of the top-flight.
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At the moment, Watford need a manager who can take control of things which seem to be going out of their way and Hughton is the best solution to their problems. His experience and numbers are proof of his undoubted ability.
Therefore, if the Hornets intend to end the season in a respectable position, they must appoint Hughton ahead of others.