French club Stade Brestois have announced the signing of Watford midfielder Cristian Battocchio.

While the move hasn’t yet been confirmed by the Hornets, Brestois state the 23-year-old has agreed a two-year contract and will wear the number 10 shirt.

Battocchio’s departure will come as no surprise to many Watford supporters. The Argentina-born midfielder was given extra time off after representing Italy at the Under-21 European Championships this summer but didn’t return to London Colney for pre-season training.

He instead stayed in Italy and undertook pre-season with fellow Pozzo-owned club Udinese before making the switch to France.

In total Battocchio made 67 appearances for Watford and scored seven goals for the Hornets, including one memorable strike against Huddersfield Town which you can view below. 

Battocchio joined the Golden Boys on loan from Udinese in 2012 and made 16 starts and nine substitute outings during his first year in Hertfordshire, scoring twice.

He moved permanently to Vicarage Road the following summer and signed a three-year deal with the Golden Boys.

His importance increased during his second season at Watford, partly because Almen Abdi was ruled out for most of the campaign with a foot injury.

Battocchio made 41 appearances during the 2013/2014 campaign, which included 27 starts and five goals.

Watford strengthened their squad once again last summer and Battocchio’s chances of first-team football became limited.

He subsequently joined Virtus Entella on a season-long loan but wasn’t able to help the club avoid relegation from Serie B.