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New signing Matej Vydra among the scorers as Watford beat Austrian side SV Feldkirchen 7-0
Friendlies early into pre-season are almost always arranged to improve fitness but Beppe Sannino won't be complaining that his side found their shooting boots during this evening's 7-0 victory over SV Feldkirchen.
Saturday's pre-season opener against SK Austria Klagenfurt was decided by a solitary Lloyd Dyer goal but this evening six different Golden Boys found the net against fellow Austrian third division side SV Feldkirchen.
Almen Abdi, Matej Vydra, Sean Murray, Lewis McGugan, Fernando Forestieri and Mathias Ranegie all scored and 21 Hornets players were given a run-out at Sportplatz SV Glanegg.
Watford started in a 4-3-3 formation, like they did on Saturday. Tommie Hoban was at right back, with new signings Craig Cathcart and Gabriel Tamas in the middle. Daniel Pudil completed the backline. Cristian Battocchio was in the holding midfield role, with Abdi and Murray in front of him, and Dyer and Vydra were either side of Troy Deeney.
The Hornets thought they had taken the lead five minutes into the contest only for Dyer's goal to be ruled out following Deeney's pass.
Watford were dominating possession early on and were very sharp considering how early into pre-season the match was.
However, the visitors almost went behind when sloppy defending allowed SV Feldkirchen a free shot at goal and Heurelho Gomes needed to save well.
Watford made their dominance count with the next attack though when Deeney stepped over Pudil's pass and Abdi finished from close range.
The lead was doubled moments later when Vydra gathered Abdi's cross at the far post and Vydra's low cross-shot was bundled in by a defender.
The victory was all but secured midway through the half with a third Golden Boys goal and it was a cracker. Vydra cut on to his right foot 15 yards from goal and powerfully struck the ball into the far, top corner.
The Hornets immediately switched to 3-5-2, with Dyer moving to right wing back and Vydra joining Deeney up top - the partnership which almost fired the club into the Premier League during the 2012/2013 campaign.
There was a period of little goal mouth action before Battocchio sent a wicked long-range effort narrowly over the bar.
The Golden Boys went into the break with a four-goal cushion but it could have been five. Murray finished calmly after good work from Vydra on the left but Abdi could have had a second had it not been for a fine save by the SV Feldkirchen goalkeeper.
The tourists made seven changes at the break as they switched back to 4-3-3. Jonathan Bond, Lloyd Doyley, Joel Ekstrand, McGugan, Ikechi Anya, Forestieri and Ranegie were all introduced.
Watford struggled to find fluidity at first but then scored two goals in as many minutes just before the hour mark.
A nice move from right to left was finished superbly by McGugan, whose 20-yard effort nestled into the top corner, and then Forestieri scored at the second attempt after he tried to round the goalkeeper.
Forestieri could have had another soon after but he was unable to direct Anya's powerful cross under the crossbar.
Shortly after a double change, when Josh Doherty and Diego Fabbrini took to the field, Lewis McGugan forced the goalkeeper to save his third free kick of the half, after the first two had struck the wall.
Ranegie became his side's sixth different scorer with five minutes remaining when Forestieri left him with a simple finish from close range to round off the rout.
The Hornets' next friendly is on Saturday against Russian club and participants in last season's Europa League Rubin Kazan.
Watford: Gomes (Bond HT); Hoban (Doyley HT), Cathcart (Ekstrand HT), Tamas (Brown 78), Pudil (Doherty 72); Battocchio, Abdi (Fabbrini 72), Murray (McGugan HT); Vydra (Forestieri HT), Deeney (Ranegie HT), Dyer (Anya HT).