Goalkeeper Chris Lewington, who was on trial at Watford, has joined a three-year deal with Colchester United

Watford Observer: Lewington signs three-year deal with Colchester Lewington signs three-year deal with Colchester

Goalkeeper Chris Lewington, who was on trial with Watford at their pre-season training camp in Italy, has joined League One side Colchester United.

The Hornets confirmed last week that the 25-year-old had travelled to Udine on trial but he has agreed a switch to the U’s and has penned a three-year deal.

Watford were also interested in Stevenage winger Luke Freeman and had made early enquiries about the player.

However, the 22-year-old switched from Boro to Bristol City last week and has penned a three-year deal.

The Hornets were also looking into a move for Derby County midfielder Jeff Hendrick but he has signed a new four-year contract with the Rams.

The 22-year-old was a regular for Derby last season, making 35 appearances despite missing a three-month period due to injury.

Watford have been monitoring a host of players throughout the summer including former midfielder Don Cowie and goalkeeper Matt Gilks.

However, Cowie is set to sign a new deal at Cardiff City while Gilks has joined former Golden Boys boss Sean Dyche at Burnley.

Comments (15)

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12:21pm Wed 2 Jul 14

1987Hornet says...

No real issue that we have 'missed out' on these 3. Lewington would be a second/third choice anyway and with Abdi fit and hopefully Tozser returning, I'm not sure we are in desperate need of Hendricks. Freeman may have been an interesting signing as an up and coming talent but I expect there was more to it than we know as I'm not sure he would turn us down over Bristol City, unless it was for guaranteed regular football (as City are in a poor financial situation so doubt it could be money related). With no injuries our midfield should be one of the best in the Championship.
No real issue that we have 'missed out' on these 3. Lewington would be a second/third choice anyway and with Abdi fit and hopefully Tozser returning, I'm not sure we are in desperate need of Hendricks. Freeman may have been an interesting signing as an up and coming talent but I expect there was more to it than we know as I'm not sure he would turn us down over Bristol City, unless it was for guaranteed regular football (as City are in a poor financial situation so doubt it could be money related). With no injuries our midfield should be one of the best in the Championship. 1987Hornet
  • Score: 23

12:22pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Poppet Bear says...

Let's hope they just weren't good enough !!!
Let's hope they just weren't good enough !!! Poppet Bear
  • Score: 1

12:29pm Wed 2 Jul 14

corey_wfc says...

From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player.
I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level.
From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player. I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level. corey_wfc
  • Score: 1

12:32pm Wed 2 Jul 14

corey_wfc says...

corey_wfc wrote:
From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player. I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level.
many fon't fancy him* at this level.
[quote][p][bold]corey_wfc[/bold] wrote: From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player. I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level.[/p][/quote]many fon't fancy him* at this level. corey_wfc
  • Score: -1

12:36pm Wed 2 Jul 14

corey_wfc says...

corey_wfc wrote:
corey_wfc wrote: From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player. I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level.
many fon't fancy him* at this level.
I give up!
[quote][p][bold]corey_wfc[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]corey_wfc[/bold] wrote: From what I have seen, Freeman looks like a good little player. I agree with '1987Hornet' though. If we really wanted him, we probaly would have gone and got him. The fact that he has signed for Bristol City (with all due respect to BCFC) without any competition, perhaps shows that many don't fancy at this level.[/p][/quote]many fon't fancy him* at this level.[/p][/quote]I give up! corey_wfc
  • Score: 20

12:42pm Wed 2 Jul 14

The Skeptical Optimist says...

Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc.

I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.
Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc. I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench. The Skeptical Optimist
  • Score: -4

12:54pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Goldenboy1960 says...

The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc.

I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.
As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.
[quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc. I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.[/p][/quote]As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those. Goldenboy1960
  • Score: 0

12:58pm Wed 2 Jul 14

mellow yellow says...

A nice little holiday for a keeper with unfeasibly large comedy hands who wanted first team football, someone else going to Bristol who will get to play every match, and as for the Hendricks story... That was NEVER going to happen and was purely a contract enhancer. To be blunt, we don't need any of these players.
A nice little holiday for a keeper with unfeasibly large comedy hands who wanted first team football, someone else going to Bristol who will get to play every match, and as for the Hendricks story... That was NEVER going to happen and was purely a contract enhancer. To be blunt, we don't need any of these players. mellow yellow
  • Score: 7

1:09pm Wed 2 Jul 14

harryhornet says...

mellow yellow wrote:
A nice little holiday for a keeper with unfeasibly large comedy hands who wanted first team football, someone else going to Bristol who will get to play every match, and as for the Hendricks story... That was NEVER going to happen and was purely a contract enhancer. To be blunt, we don't need any of these players.
good spot. what ridiculous hands. I wonder if he's got a pair of clown shoes on as well
[quote][p][bold]mellow yellow[/bold] wrote: A nice little holiday for a keeper with unfeasibly large comedy hands who wanted first team football, someone else going to Bristol who will get to play every match, and as for the Hendricks story... That was NEVER going to happen and was purely a contract enhancer. To be blunt, we don't need any of these players.[/p][/quote]good spot. what ridiculous hands. I wonder if he's got a pair of clown shoes on as well harryhornet
  • Score: 1

1:12pm Wed 2 Jul 14

D.unstable says...

I hope we didnt pay for his flight home...time waster!!!
I hope we didnt pay for his flight home...time waster!!! D.unstable
  • Score: -2

2:03pm Wed 2 Jul 14

jasonwatford says...

9 in a match day squad now , voted in at end of season meeting
9 in a match day squad now , voted in at end of season meeting jasonwatford
  • Score: 1

4:09pm Wed 2 Jul 14

andyhooked says...

Jason, I have been waiting for the news as to whether or not the Football League decided upon at least 9 players being of non-EU origin. I do not get a newspaper every day. This is good news for me. Ta!
Jason, I have been waiting for the news as to whether or not the Football League decided upon at least 9 players being of non-EU origin. I do not get a newspaper every day. This is good news for me. Ta! andyhooked
  • Score: 0

4:21pm Wed 2 Jul 14

The Skeptical Optimist says...

Goldenboy1960 wrote:
The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc.

I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.
As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.
Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations:

Anya
Cathcart
McGugan
Deeney
Bond
Hoban
Doyley
Murray
Dyer

Brown
O'Nien
Doherty
Smith
Ikpeazu
Mensah
Jakubiak

I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one.

Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota.

Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown?
[quote][p][bold]Goldenboy1960[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc. I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.[/p][/quote]As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.[/p][/quote]Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations: Anya Cathcart McGugan Deeney Bond Hoban Doyley Murray Dyer Brown O'Nien Doherty Smith Ikpeazu Mensah Jakubiak I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one. Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota. Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown? The Skeptical Optimist
  • Score: 0

7:57pm Wed 2 Jul 14

londomollari says...

The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Goldenboy1960 wrote:
The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc.

I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.
As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.
Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations:

Anya
Cathcart
McGugan
Deeney
Bond
Hoban
Doyley
Murray
Dyer

Brown
O'Nien
Doherty
Smith
Ikpeazu
Mensah
Jakubiak

I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one.

Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota.

Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown?
Yes, it does appear they are looking for a home-grown keeper in the event of injury or loan, and it does appear they have their eyes open for a home grown player should Deeney go (Graham).
I suspect Watford may sign an 'up and coming' player who may not be a first choice, but can bench squat until ready. However, under the nine player rule, it does seem rather 'tight' in the current squad.
Put four of the first nine names above in the team and the other five as subs, then there will hardly be any room on the subs bench for some very talented players.
[quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Goldenboy1960[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc. I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.[/p][/quote]As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.[/p][/quote]Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations: Anya Cathcart McGugan Deeney Bond Hoban Doyley Murray Dyer Brown O'Nien Doherty Smith Ikpeazu Mensah Jakubiak I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one. Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota. Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown?[/p][/quote]Yes, it does appear they are looking for a home-grown keeper in the event of injury or loan, and it does appear they have their eyes open for a home grown player should Deeney go (Graham). I suspect Watford may sign an 'up and coming' player who may not be a first choice, but can bench squat until ready. However, under the nine player rule, it does seem rather 'tight' in the current squad. Put four of the first nine names above in the team and the other five as subs, then there will hardly be any room on the subs bench for some very talented players. londomollari
  • Score: 0

9:00pm Wed 2 Jul 14

The Skeptical Optimist says...

londomollari wrote:
The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Goldenboy1960 wrote:
The Skeptical Optimist wrote:
Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc.

I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.
As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.
Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations:

Anya
Cathcart
McGugan
Deeney
Bond
Hoban
Doyley
Murray
Dyer

Brown
O'Nien
Doherty
Smith
Ikpeazu
Mensah
Jakubiak

I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one.

Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota.

Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown?
Yes, it does appear they are looking for a home-grown keeper in the event of injury or loan, and it does appear they have their eyes open for a home grown player should Deeney go (Graham).
I suspect Watford may sign an 'up and coming' player who may not be a first choice, but can bench squat until ready. However, under the nine player rule, it does seem rather 'tight' in the current squad.
Put four of the first nine names above in the team and the other five as subs, then there will hardly be any room on the subs bench for some very talented players.
At the moment (as in, with no future acquisitions) I'm not sure there'd be too many people making the squad last year that will be missing from the matchday squad of 18 come August...

Probably just Battocchio and two of Tamas, Ekstrand, Doyley, Angella, Belkalem, Hoban and Cathcart. That is assuming that Faraoni, Acuna, Fabbrini and Iriney are all going to leave (still with me?!).

If I were in charge of transfers, I'd only really be aiming at a 10 goal a year Championship striker (although to be fair, Ranegie's scoring record for us isn't that bad - 4 goals in 10 appearances), a reserve goalie, and a right sided equivalent of Pudil.

Other than that, I'd say our squad is fairly complete - at least within the bounds of reason...
[quote][p][bold]londomollari[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Goldenboy1960[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]The Skeptical Optimist[/bold] wrote: Not a disaster, but really we do need to get some more homegrown players from somewhere. We only have 9 in the squad that are ready for Championship level before you're getting to players like O'Nien, Doherty, Jakubiak, Mensah etc. I don't know if the rules changed in the end, but even if they didn't a fairly unlucky set of injuries would start to eat into our subs bench.[/p][/quote]As far as I'm aware the current rules state that in a squad of 18, you have to have at least 6 players that have played in a UK Academy for 3 years prior to the age of 21. That includes foreign players that have come into the country. Belerin on loan from Arsenal was one of those.[/p][/quote]Yes. The homegrown players in our squad right now, by my calculations: Anya Cathcart McGugan Deeney Bond Hoban Doyley Murray Dyer Brown O'Nien Doherty Smith Ikpeazu Mensah Jakubiak I would argue the last 7 aren't really ready for Championship level football yet - that is, unless this coming season is their first good one. Hoban is only just recovering from a long term injury - and we all know that that often means they may easily get injured again. Then say Cathcart has a problem with his heart one week. That only requires two more injuries (which happen and aren't necessarily anyone's fault) and we're having to sacrifice substitutes just meet a quota. Of course, it may not be a problem, but I'd feel more comfortable with just a couple more homegrowns to ensure a healthily deep matchday squad, even if we get unlucky with injuries. After all, we hardly have a deep squad fullstop, and we're probably looking at at least 2 or 3 more acquisitions this summer anyway. Why not make them homegrown?[/p][/quote]Yes, it does appear they are looking for a home-grown keeper in the event of injury or loan, and it does appear they have their eyes open for a home grown player should Deeney go (Graham). I suspect Watford may sign an 'up and coming' player who may not be a first choice, but can bench squat until ready. However, under the nine player rule, it does seem rather 'tight' in the current squad. Put four of the first nine names above in the team and the other five as subs, then there will hardly be any room on the subs bench for some very talented players.[/p][/quote]At the moment (as in, with no future acquisitions) I'm not sure there'd be too many people making the squad last year that will be missing from the matchday squad of 18 come August... Probably just Battocchio and two of Tamas, Ekstrand, Doyley, Angella, Belkalem, Hoban and Cathcart. That is assuming that Faraoni, Acuna, Fabbrini and Iriney are all going to leave (still with me?!). If I were in charge of transfers, I'd only really be aiming at a 10 goal a year Championship striker (although to be fair, Ranegie's scoring record for us isn't that bad - 4 goals in 10 appearances), a reserve goalie, and a right sided equivalent of Pudil. Other than that, I'd say our squad is fairly complete - at least within the bounds of reason... The Skeptical Optimist
  • Score: -1

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