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Apr 23, 2019 at 7.45pm UK at ​Vicarage Road
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Javi Gracia: 'Watford need points more than Southampton'

Gracia: 'Watford need points more than Southampton'
© Reuters
Gracia has enjoyed a fine first full season at Vicarage Road.

Watford host Southampton on Tuesday night with Hornets head coach Javi Gracia insisting his side need the points just as much as their lowly visitors.

With an FA Cup final meeting with Manchester City on the horizon and the potential for a seventh-placed finish in the Premier League, Gracia has enjoyed a fine first full season at Vicarage Road.

Southampton, meanwhile, are still not mathematically safe from relegation and are currently five points clear of Cardiff in 18th – despite winning three of their last five matches.

The trip to Hertfordshire is their game in hand and a chance for Ralph Hasenhuttl's side to all-but secure another season in the top-flight, but Gracia will be sending his players out with a clear message.

"I think before playing the game, my players know perfectly that we need the points more than them," he said.

"It is the best mentality to get the points available. If we don't play with that feeling it is difficult to get results.

"They really need the points as well. We try to compete as well as possible because I'm sure we will have to if we want the points.

"All of the teams are honest and always they play very well and it is always difficult to get points in the different circumstances.

"We have to be concentrated until the end, if we don't do it in the next games, I'm sure we won't be able to achieve the results we want."

Gracia has earned plenty of plaudits in leading Watford to just the second FA Cup final in their history and already achieving a record Premier League points total.

The Spaniard, however, is pleased that his players are now starting to be hailed for their form in what could prove to be an historic season.

"I am happy at the moment," he added.

"I live in the moment and I enjoy the moment, the success of this season is not only at the end, we have to enjoy every day and every single game.

"I'm happy at the moment because my players have the recognition and that is important for me, to see our supporters enjoy it with the team and feel as well that my players have that recognition."

Captain Troy Deeney remains suspended for the Southampton game having seen his appeal for a red card in the recent defeat to Arsenal rejected.

In a timely boost with the cup final on the horizon, Roberto Pereyra could play some part on Tuesday night having overcome a hip problem.


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Javi Gracia in charge of Watford on February 2, 2019
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CManchester CityMan City38322495237298
2Liverpool38307189226797
3Chelsea38219863392472
4Tottenham HotspurSpurs382321367392871
5Arsenal382171073512270
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd381991065541166
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves38169134746157
8Everton38159145446854
9Leicester CityLeicester38157165148352
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham38157165255-352
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13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle38129174248-645
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16Southampton38912174565-2039
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RCardiff CityCardiff38104243469-3534
RFulham3875263481-4726
RHuddersfield TownHuddersfield3837282276-5416

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