It speaks volumes of Gerard Deulofeu that he opted to trade in the security of Barcelona for a relegation scrap with Watford in the name of regular game time.

Staying put, training alongside Lionel Messi and playing an increasingly bit part role in what looks like being a La Liga title procession for the Blaugrana was the easy option. That’s rarely a route favoured by Deulofeu.

His loan move to Watford is the fourth of a nomadic career which has seen him play in England and Italy as well as his native Spain.

This experience, Deulofeu claims, has readied him for his latest short-term tenancy and allows him to leave any semblance of an ego firmly at the Vicarage Road door.

“I know I am coming from Messi, Suarez and Iniesta, but I am here now. I played also with Everton, with Milan. A lot of dressing rooms in my life,” the 23-year-old said.

“I’m happy to be here, I’m here to help the team and to make Watford better. But I don’t think because I come from Barcelona I am the best player here. That is not my character.”

Watford Observer:

Familiar faces: Deulofeu took on many of his new team-mates when Watford beat Everton 3-2 in December 2016.

Having initially joined Everton on loan in 2013, Deulofeu returned to the club on a permanent basis in a reported £4.2 million deal in July 2015.

His second stint on Merseyside failed to match the highs of the first and Deulofeu was once again sent out on loan, joining AC Milan in January of last year.

It was at the San Siro where the Hornets new number seven rediscovered his swagger, in turn convincing Barcelona to activate a release clause to bring the Riudarenes-born Deulofeu back to Catalonia.

The sense Deulofeu has unfinished business in England is a palpable one, and he is eager for Watford to benefit from a player in the same vein of form as he showed in Milan.

“No the Premier League hasn’t seen my best,” Deulofeu asserted. “I played well with Everton and I made a good partnership with Lukaku but didn’t play at my best level.

“In Milan I did, but in Everton I was not the same player. In Milan I was more complete so let’s see what happens in the next three or four months.

“I want to be a complete player both defensively and by scoring goals. I want to win games, be aggressive in attack and score.”

Watford Observer:

Deulofeu wants to recreate the form he showed with AC Milan during his Watford loan.

Not adverse to travel and with unsettled scores in England. What then are the chances of Deulofeu opting to extend his Watford stay beyond the end of the season?

The four-time capped international, was non-committal on the subject and you sense the desire to be a regular for Barcelona outstrips the more immediate ambition of playing regularly.

Still, Deulofeu left the door open, and says the next four months will dictate any decision he makes on his future.

“I don’t know, in the future anything can happen. At the moment I am here until June, so let’s see and maybe in three or four months I love the football and I love this team,” he said.

“I can’t say anything for sure because it would be fake.”

First impressions count, not least when making a player accustomed to the grandeur of Barcelona feel settled in the, let’s be honest, less salubrious surroundings of Watford.

To this effect, new head coach Javi Gracia, perhaps aided by his own Spanish heritage, has helped Deulofeu acclimatise to his new surroundings.

The warm welcome came with a caveat, though, and Deulofeu is aware that early pleasantries will mean little unless he delivers on the pitch.

“I am happy because he (Gracia) gave me a good welcome and now I am working for him and I want to win games with him and my team-mates,” he said.

“He is a happy manager, a warm manager, and he told me he will give me good confidence, but also I need to give my best football for him and for Watford.

“Here in the Premier League, nobody gives you anything. You need to work every day for your objectives.

“The last, three, four months of the season for me is the most important part of the season.”

Watford Observer:

Warm welcome: Deulofeu thanked new Hornets head coach Javi Gracia for helping him settle at Vicarage Road

A bruising midweek encounter at Stoke City was as visceral a reminder of the demands of English football as possible, but Deulofeu still managed to punctuate the encounter with touches of quality.

His maiden outing at Vicarage Road, barring disaster, will come under the lights on Monday night with the visit of champions Chelsea, who come into the game on the back of a 3-0 loss to Bournemouth.

Deulofeu believes the loss could either work for or against Watford, but is relishing the thought of playing at his new home for the first time.

“They come here with a defeat, but when a team lose a game the next game they really want to win. What we need to do is fight,” he said.

“We play at home with our fans, and want to play well, take confidence and take the three points.

“In my opinion, I love to play at night. We play at home, we play at night and most important is to take the points. I want to make the fans enjoy Monday.”