Hornets head coach Beppe Sannino says Watford’s performances are still missing something ahead of tomorrow’s Championship clash with Leeds United but believes the only way to improve is through “work, sacrifice and heart”.
The Hornets responded to Saturday’s 3-0 defeat at Norwich City by beating Rotherham United 2-0 on Tuesday night. However, the Hornets head coach feels his side are yet to perform to their best this season.
“We are still missing something,” the Italian explained on Wednesday when asked about reproducing their home form on the road.
“In the match against Norwich we could have been better. Yesterday (Tuesday) we could have been better in the first half but the second half was very good. We have to go and work.”
Addressing the question of whether his side had shown the same “personality” away from home as they did at Vicarage Road, Sannino said there was a lot of work to be undertaken.
When pressed on what could be done, he replied: “Work, work, work and sacrifice. I know only three words; work, sacrifice and heart.”
Watford sit seventh in the Championship after two wins and a defeat from their opening three matches and Sannino is adamant his side must focus on Leeds rather than dwelling on previous results.
“After one win, we were really happy and this is not good,” he explained. “The match has gone and to reach the target you have to leave the win in the past, and the next training session and the next match is most important.”
He continued: “I am happy if those in the stands think the players are working hard. But I would like more and more because these boys can do more and do better.”
Sannino made five changes to the starting XI for the Hornets’ trip to the New York Stadium on Tuesday and also introduced Lloyd Dyer and striker Odion Ighalo from the bench to good effect in the second half.
With Matej Vydra a doubt for tomorrow’s game with a dead leg, Sannino was asked if Ighalo would be handed his first league start.
Sannino replied: “I am happy about having all these players that are very good, not one or two. I have four or five very good players in this position and it is difficult to pick."
“I have other players and I need two days to watch the training and then decide,” he added on Wednesday.
Sannino can select Mathias Ranegie, who has recovered from a groin problem, while Uche Ikpeazu played 45 minutes during a reserve game with AFC Wimbledon on Wednesday.
Ighalo, Daniel Tozser and the other players who did not start in south Yorkshire were also given run-outs against the Dons.
Joel Ekstrand is ruled out due to suspension and Craig Cathcart and Bernard Mensah will both be absent with knee injuries.
The Hornets also host Doncaster Rovers on Tuesday in the Capital One Cup.
After rotating his side in the first round victory at Stevenage, Sannino was asked if he would again make wholesale changes to his starting XI. The Watford boss replied he was only focused on tomorrow’s fixture against Leeds.