Beppe Sannino believes Watford’s 2-0 victory over Rotherham United justified his decision to make five changes to his starting XI.
The Italian decided to drop Daniel Tozser and Almen Abdi to the substitutes’ bench while Daniel Pudil and Lewis McGugan were left out of the squad. Joel Ekstrand was suspended after being sent off against Norwich.
In came Tommie Hoban, Ikechi Anya, Keith Andrews, Gianni Munari and Diego Fabbrini.
Watford, who played in a 4-4-2 formation, were poor in the opening period but improved after the break.
Lloyd Dyer, a 65th minute substitute, netted the opening goal and then celebrated in intriguing fashion as he appeared to angrily shout at Hornets head coach Sannino.
Gianni Munari added a second with three minutes remaining to complete the win.
Speaking after the victory, Sannino said: “We have 24 players who could start. If I have that many players then they can all play in different matches.
“Tonight it was important to put this starting XI on the pitch and I did.
“We played 88 minutes at Norwich City on Saturday with ten men and we did a lot of running. Tonight we needed fresh players and the result justifies that.”
He added: “I am happy with the second half because the guys worked very hard and showed personality on the pitch.
“Those substitutes who came on, Odion Igahlo, Dyer and Daniel Tozser, had an impact on the game which was very pleasing.”
Watford could have had two penalties in the contest. Deeney appeared to be brought down by Millers goalkeeper Adam Collins in the opening period and in the second half Ighalo was hauled down in the area.
Sannino didn't discuss the decisions and added: “The result is fair. We have won against a very good team. They have angry and aggressive players and also play good football.
“To win here is difficult but Watford go home with the three points.
“For me, it is important to make the fans happy. To win away is important for my guys but I am already thinking about the next match.”
Sannino's response to questions regarding Dyer's celebration and possible dressing room unrest can be found here.