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AUDIO: Gianfranco Zola believes Watford are more mature this season
Gianfranco Zola believes Watford are more mature this season as their patience against Wigan Athletic showed.
Wigan helped restrict the Hornets’ free-flowing passing style on Saturday but the Hornets scored the winner with eight minutes of normal time remaining through Cristian Battocchio.
Zola said: “We are going to keep scoring goals - I have no doubt about that - the point is in games like this where the opposition are so strong and so organised you have to be able to keep control of the game.
“Last season, sometimes we found teams who were playing well against us but we didn’t have the patience to wait for the right opportunity, we kept going, going, going and we lost many games doing that.
“This year I think the team is more mature and have learned their lessons and we are going well. I am pleased because Championships are not only won playing fantastic football and dominating the opposition; sometimes you have to be able to get the best out of games and today that was the case.”
Wigan played with one striker at Vicarage Road and Zola believes that was an indication of the respect Coyle has for the Hornets.
Zola said: “The other teams know about us. Wigan came here playing with one striker and a lot of midfielders. That is demonstration of the respect they have for Watford, which is pleasant in a way but in another way I’d like to avoid that. But that is the story and we need to face that.
“People certainly know us better but we know more about the Championship, the system we play and I think the team is getting stronger.”
It was two substitutes – Battocchio and Davide Faraoni – who contributed to the winning goal and Zola agreed it highlighted that those in the starting XI need to impress due to the quality in the Golden Boys’ squad.
He said: “That is a very important point because I cannot think of [a team] winning the Championship with 11 players, especially when you play so many games in such a short space of time.
“You need to have people come in and do a job and there are also games when the games are tactically stuck and you need people to come on and make a difference. That was the case today and I’m delighted that it was us who made the difference.”
Listen to Zola's press conference below.
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