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Watford fan Lee Coan reflects on the Hornets' 1-0 win against Middlesbrough and believes a late play-off bid could occur
There was a lot of yawning at The Vic on Saturday. It’s not that the football wasn’t of a high quality but for long spells, it was all a bit boring. Wonderfully dull.
Against a decent side, we once again ground out a result - something that less than two weeks ago we seemed completely unable to do.
This is what I was chatting about as the slightly boring 90 minutes unfolded…
What a terrible game this poor lad had and he thoroughly deserved to be sent off - such a pointless, and reckless tackle at a pivotal moment in the game.
And it’s not as if QPR supporters hadn’t warned us. Almost as worrying as his temper was his performance first half – he was made to look very ordinary by Nathaniel Chalobah.
Let's not right him off completely though, there have been many other players who have suffered dodgy starts to their Watford careers. Hell, debutant Alexander Merkel was sent off for an equally stupid tackle only a few weeks ago.
2) The ref
We've seen some poor refereeing displays this season, and last year as well (remember Vydra seeing red in the Middlesbrough fixture last year?).
This chap (who I think was called Oliver Langford) had four big decisions to make and he got them all spot on.
Woodgate's offside goal, the penalty, the two reds, they all seemed the right decision.
It perhaps would have been nice of him to send Chalobah off for starting on his old mate Fernando but I guess that would have been a bit harsh. The ref did more than ok, which made for a lovely change.
We're really getting to see what Beppe is made of now, aren't we?
At first I liked him because he seemed slightly crazy. Then I read a bit more about him and warmed further to his story.
Now, my respect for this guy is all down to results. Since Sannino arrived, we've had six home games, scored eight, conceded just one. One!
Out of those six games we've had four wins, a draw, and a defeat. In the six home matches prior to Beppe we had conceded eleven, scored just three, and won just one (the other five games being defeats). He's doing a cracking job considering the state we were in.
4) Renewed optimism
The problem is we’re now all looking up the table again, which will no doubt lead to heartache.
Perhaps it's already too late for this season, there's I think 16 games left and if we carry on collecting points roughly in the same manner we have done so far under Sannino (averaging I think about 1.6 per game), we'll finish somewhere around the 67 points mark.
Last year Leicester snuck into the play-offs with 68. So it's going to be tight and we’ll probably need a big slice of luck.
But who knows, we might just be in the fight for sixth place after all. Yeovil first though! Let’s just hope it doesn’t rain…