Tom Cleverley can add quality to Watford’s midfield after stepping up his recovery from a long-term Achilles problem, says Hornets head coach Javi Gracia.

The former Manchester United man, who has not featured this season after undergoing surgery in the summer, returned to first-team training this week along with skipper Troy Deeney.

While Javi Gracia confirmed Cleverley is still someway off making a return to the matchday squad, he says the 29-year-old will undoubtedly add class to Watford when he is back to 100 per cent.

“I do not know when Tom will be back with the team for matches but we have enjoyed having him in training this week,” Gracia said.

“For the first time he has trained with the team in parts of the session and it is very good news for us after a long time injured.

“The best thing I can say about him is he is a quality player who can play in lots of midfield positions and I am sure he will help us in the future.”

Deeney’s return also provided a timely boost for Gracia after he saw his Watford side struggle to turn chances into goals in a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle United.

The Spaniard will still be without Daryl Janmaat and Sebastian Prodl as the defensive duo continue their recovery from injury.

One enforced change at Southampton will see Etienne Capoue, who has been excellent this season, miss out after picking up a fifth booking of the season last time out.