If there was any doubt of Javi Gracia’s impact at Watford, a 4-1 defeat of Premier League champions Chelsea on his Vicarage Road debut surely put them to bed.

The Hornets were good value for their 4-1 win, which came courtesy of three goals in the space of seven minutes at the death last night.

Watford were hungrier from the get go against Antonio Conte’s off-colour Blues as they claimed their first league win since Boxing Day.

For Abdoulaye Doucoure, who was back to his best in the centre of the park, the renewed energy levels in the Watford squad can be put down to Gracia’s impact.

“He is a new manager and has come in with new ideas. He is more defensive than the manager we had before so everybody works for him. We need points and need to fight,” he said.

“Every player wants to fight and every player has a new chance to impress.”

After watching many of their relegation rivals play out draws over the weekend, Monday night’s game presented a chance to put daylight between Watford and the drop zone.

Add to the mix a run of one win in 12 Premier League games and the sense of relief which accompanied a famous victory was palpable.

Doucoure hailed an important win for Watford, but acknowledged that the Hornets, who sit six points above the bottom three, are by no means out of trouble.

“We are happy to win the game. We worked hard, we fought and we deserved the win,” the Frenchman said.

“It is a very big boost, it is a massive win for us and it has been a long time since we won. We are happy but it is only three points, so we need to work hard and get more.”

“Every week we have a big game now and for the other teams as well, so we have to take points when we can.”

Watford have suffered late collapses throughout the season and it looked like history could repeat itself when Eden Hazard scored an 82nd minute leveller with a long-range drive.

Watford rallied though and three quick goals were enough to give them a victory they more than warranted.

Doucoure was pleased with the manner of the home side’s reaction, but still wants to see late goals conceded eradicated from Watford’s game.

“When you have a quality player like Hazard, he showed his character in the game and scored a really good goal,” he said.

“We didn’t give up and Daryl [Janmaat] scored a super goal. After we scored twice more. We have to avoid a mistake like the goal of Hazard, but we are happy that we scored four goals.”