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Watford boss Gianfranco Zola believes Bolton Wanderers are 'possibly the best team' in the Championship
Gianfranco Zola believes his Watford side will come up against “possibly the best team” in the Championship this weekend despite Bolton Wanderers’ current league position.
Bolton have won just once in their first four league games and are currently 20th in the table, but they remain one of the favourites to win the title with bookmakers.
And Zola said: “Certainly quality wise we are going to play against possibly the best team in the Championship, or certainly one of the best.
“The position they are in now is not the position they will probably be in at the end of the season, and deserve to be now.”
Watford were thumped 5-1 in their last league game at Derby County but have since had two weeks on the training ground due to the international break.
Zola said: “It was a painful defeat, although in particular circumstances, and it was a pity we couldn’t play a game straight away because of the international week.
“I think that would have been better but we are going to make sure we are up for the game.”
Watford have made 16 signings this summer but many have yet to feature due to fitness issues or because they arrived shortly before the transfer deadline, which was less than 24 hours prior to the Derby defeat.
When asked whether there will be a host of changes to the line-up this weekend, Zola replied: “We will see, I am making some considerations. To be honest some of the new players need to know the Championship so I don’t know.
“I will consider tomorrow if some of the signings will play from the beginning of the match or if some will come on later.
“It is important for them to know the sort of league they are going to be playing in.”
One player who certainly won’t feature is John Eustace.
Watford will be without their captain for several weeks after he had a minor back operation towards the end of last week.
Zola explained: “John has only just had his operation and whilst we know that he is doing okay, it will still be a while before we see him.
“I think it will be weeks rather than months but a lot of depends on how he is going to react to training.”
Two players who have yet to play for Watford, despite being at the club for more than a month, are Alex Geijo and Fitz Hall.
Both men had been training with the first team in the last couple of weeks but Hall suffered a minor injury this week, which pushed his return back slightly.
Zola said: “Alex is nearly fit and he should be available for selection this week. We will see.
“Fitz Hall is doing very well but he had a little setback this week, nothing major. He is starting [training] again tomorrow but I’m not sure he will be available this week.
“It is not the same injury as before.
“When you are out for a long time, and when you come back and try to increase the rhythm of the training sessions, you can have problems.”
Stephen McGinn, who has not played a competitive match since February 2011, has also returned to training in recent weeks and impressed his new boss.
“I am very pleased with Stephen McGinn, he has been doing very well,” Zola said.
“He has been training with us and he has had no problems. He is a very good player. I didn’t know him [before I joined Watford] and he has been a surprise, a positive surprise.
“I think it’s too soon for him to be considered but I think it’s been good.
“He has been training with the squad for two weeks and I’m satisfied.”
Prince Buaben is out for another three or four weeks and Geoffrey Mujangi Bia is also injured.