AUDIO: Beppe Sannino denies Watford struggle to defend set pieces

Lukas Jutkiewicz celebrating his goal. Picture: Action Images

Lukas Jutkiewicz celebrating his goal. Picture: Action Images

First published in Sport
Last updated
Watford Observer: Photograph of the Author by , Deputy Group Sports Editor

Beppe Sannino dismissed the suggestion Watford struggle to defend set-pieces but did accept the decision to play with a high defensive line against Bolton Wanderers contributed to their downfall yesterday.

Watford failed to defend several set-piece opportunities in the first half at the Reebok Stadium before they were finally punished in the 35th minute by Lukas Jutkiewicz.

When Sannino was asked whether the Hornets work on defending set-pieces because it has been a perceived long-term problem, the head coach replied: “Sorry I disagree a little bit with you.

"In terms of goals conceded, yes we did concede today from a set-piece and also at Reading I think but I can’t remember many goals conceded [from set pieces].

"Also you know we were in a position where we have not conceded a lot of goals.

“When we prepare for games we prepare trying to avoid conceding from all situations; from set plays and open play. When you analyse a game, you need to have a bigger picture.”

Bolton’s second goal came after Joe Mason was slipped in behind the Hornets’ high defensive line, which, like the first goal, had happened on several occasions beforehand.

Watford had only scored twice in their previous three games and Sannino said the decision to play with a higher line was aimed at improving their attacking threat.

He said: “I told the players before the game that we needed to win an away game and we chose to play higher because we wanted to create more chances and opportunities going forward.

"But I think this was a problem because we conceded a lot of space behind our [defenders’] shoulders and that allowed them to cause us a lot of problems.”

Listen to Sannino's press conference in full below.

Comments (6)

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8:38pm Sun 23 Feb 14

ceebee580 says...

Our attacking prowess was non exist ant and we played a high line to improve our goal threat? Well it didn't go to plan did it.
What I saw was the wing backs being given the ball and instead of moving forward to offer a threat they turned and played the ball back as if they were under strict instruction to contain and not commit forward.
When we went two down we had no game plan.
In the second half Farioni hardly passed the half way line, two nil down and no forward momentum from your wing back what's that all about? Why was the bench not instructing him to get forward he was only two yards away from Beppe.
I got the impression that we had conceded a two nil defeat at half time as the coach didn't want to get a thrashing.
An absolutely hopeless performance with unsubstainable tactics from a negative coach.
Our attacking prowess was non exist ant and we played a high line to improve our goal threat? Well it didn't go to plan did it. What I saw was the wing backs being given the ball and instead of moving forward to offer a threat they turned and played the ball back as if they were under strict instruction to contain and not commit forward. When we went two down we had no game plan. In the second half Farioni hardly passed the half way line, two nil down and no forward momentum from your wing back what's that all about? Why was the bench not instructing him to get forward he was only two yards away from Beppe. I got the impression that we had conceded a two nil defeat at half time as the coach didn't want to get a thrashing. An absolutely hopeless performance with unsubstainable tactics from a negative coach. ceebee580
  • Score: 8

9:32pm Sun 23 Feb 14

Scothorn says...

My recent memory of Beppe's attitude - away to Bournemouth a few weeks ago - score was 1-1 - we get a corner with 1 minute of stoppage time to go and we keep 5 men back marking 2 Bournemouth forwards - the players were looking to the bench for the sign to go forward but Beppe was satisfied with the point.
My recent memory of Beppe's attitude - away to Bournemouth a few weeks ago - score was 1-1 - we get a corner with 1 minute of stoppage time to go and we keep 5 men back marking 2 Bournemouth forwards - the players were looking to the bench for the sign to go forward but Beppe was satisfied with the point. Scothorn
  • Score: 2

10:33am Mon 24 Feb 14

andyandyandy says...

You don't know what you're doing! You don't know what you're doing!
You don't know what you're doing! You don't know what you're doing! andyandyandy
  • Score: 0

1:02pm Mon 24 Feb 14

bristol hornet says...

All very negative stuff from Beppe.

I think he is running out of excuses.

He is also running out of time, and will not be here next season when the club see the fall in sales of season tickets after the recent dross being served up.

Taxi For Beppe!
All very negative stuff from Beppe. I think he is running out of excuses. He is also running out of time, and will not be here next season when the club see the fall in sales of season tickets after the recent dross being served up. Taxi For Beppe! bristol hornet
  • Score: 0

1:10pm Mon 24 Feb 14

bristol hornet says...

Why is this report not under the Watford FC section?

No wonder there are so few comments stuck away in the general sports section!
Why is this report not under the Watford FC section? No wonder there are so few comments stuck away in the general sports section! bristol hornet
  • Score: 0

1:48pm Mon 24 Feb 14

francowatford says...

We defend deep the fans gripe, we keep a high line to increase our attacking capabilities and we fall flat on our face and lose and look hopeless. Defending deep is where we have looked solid it's not pretty but it has been effective for Beppe.this formation in the prem will get us slaughtered. Imo last years formation was best but with more work needed on the defensive side. I prefer zolas style as Beppes style is very old school championship and we are not moving forward in the style of play that we saw with Zola wwith the right personnel on the pitch, Nathan, AbdI, Nathan, Hogg, Tommy, FITZ, NOS
We defend deep the fans gripe, we keep a high line to increase our attacking capabilities and we fall flat on our face and lose and look hopeless. Defending deep is where we have looked solid it's not pretty but it has been effective for Beppe.this formation in the prem will get us slaughtered. Imo last years formation was best but with more work needed on the defensive side. I prefer zolas style as Beppes style is very old school championship and we are not moving forward in the style of play that we saw with Zola wwith the right personnel on the pitch, Nathan, AbdI, Nathan, Hogg, Tommy, FITZ, NOS francowatford
  • Score: 2

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