Watford vs Norwich City Match Preview.
(Picture - Zimbio)
Watford return to Vicarage Road this weekend in the Barclays Premier League, with the Hornets looking to build on last weekend's victory over Aston Villa.
Quique Sanchez Flores' men were not at their fluid best last weekend, but they managed to grind out a victory and the Golden Boys will be hoping for a similar result at full time against Alex Neal's side
That result meant that Watford moved up to 11th place in the table, whilst Norwich's draw with Arsenal last weekend means that they sit in 16th position, just three points above the relegation zone.
Watford have something of a score to settle with the Canaries, as the East Anglian side did the double over the Golden Boys last season in the Championship.
Norwich ran out 3-0 winners on both occasions, but it was the return fixture at Vicarage Road in February that angered many in a Watford persuasion.
In what was a tight affair with chances at a premium, Norwich were awarded a controversial penalty mid-way through the second half by referee, Carl Berry, which angered many inside Vicarage Road. Wes Hoolahan appeared to take a dive in the box and after Lewis Grabban scored the resultant penalty, Norwich never looked back.
If that penalty wasn't awarded, the match may well have finished 0-0. But we move on and it's another new challenge for Quique Sanchez Flores' side.
Alex Neil is the man in charge at Carrow Road, and the Scot has done a superb job, since he took over the managerial reigns in January.
The former Hamilton Academical player/manager, turned the Canaries form and fortunes around and he lead them to promotion via the play offs. The East Anglian side were victorious in the Play Off Final at Wembley in May, beating Aitor Karanka's Middlesbrough 2-0.
Since returning to the top division after a season away, the Canaries have picked up 13 points from their first 14 games. They have picked up three points on just three occasions this season, with those victories coming against Swansea, Bournemouth and Sunderland.
The key player for the Canaries this weekend will be livewire winger Nathan Redmond. The England Under 21 international played a huge role in the East Anglian side's promotion and scored during the crucial 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough in the Play Off Final.
The quick wide-man has four goals in 14 appearances this season for the Canaries and his pace and skills mean that he is one of the trickiest wingers to face. The Hornets defenders will have to keep a close eye on the wide-man if they wish to secure the three points, considering that he is Norwich's creator in chief alongside Robbie Brady.
Some consider this weekend's game as well as next week's fixture against Sunderland to be must wins. However, arguably, these matches are games that Watford can't afford to be losing, if they wish to maintain the comfortable gap that they have over the relegation zone.
Norwich City will be no push overs, so the Hornets will have to put in a good performance in front of the Vicarage Road faithful if they want to secure another three points.
For Watford, Sebastian Prodl and Valon Behrami will miss out once again for the Golden Boys. Watford will make a late decision on whether Heurelho Gomes is fit enough to start in goal.
For Norwich, midfielder Alex Tettey is set to return after recovering from a groin injury. Russell Martin could return to the starting line-up, whilst Matt Jarvis is ruled out.
Predicted Team Line-ups
Watford - Gomes (GK), Nyom, Britos, Cathcart, Ake, Capoue, Watson, Abdi, Deeney ©, Anya, Ighalo.
Norwich - Ruddy (GK), Wisdom, Bennett, Bassong, Olsson, Tettey, Dorrans, Redmond, Hoolahan, Brady, Grabban.
Referee - Mike Dean.