Watford’s caretaker boss Hayden Mullins felt there were plenty of positives to take from tonight’s trip to the King Power Stadium and he is focusing on building on those despite the 2-0 defeat at Leicester City.

A Jamie Vardy penalty and James Maddison’s late second goal condemned the Hornets to defeat as the Under-23 coach made his bow in the dugout in the Premier League, having been placed in interim charge following the sacking of Quique Sanchez Flores.

Mullins’ stint in charge looks increasingly likely to extend to a second game at least – the 40-year-old confirmed he is ready to remain at the helm if required against Crystal Palace on Saturday – and he liked a lot of what he saw against the high-flying Foxes.

He said: “We came with a game plan. We knew we were playing a good side, an in-form side, a side that’s second in the league, a fantastic that side that brought a lot of different threats all over the pitch, so we knew we had to step up a certain way to try and stop them.

“The way we wanted to set up we saw that for large parts of the game. Even up until the second goal we were well in the game, so loads of positives to take. We’ll be taking loads of bits from that game, try to build on them.

“I said to them at the end if they show that same fight, same drive and commitment and professionalism right up until the end of the season I’m sure we’ll be in a good place.”

Mullins reverted to a conventional back four and was pleased with how his players looked in the shape he opted for.

He explained: “We lost Jose Holebas in training, but we were always looking at a back four. We wanted to try and come here and be solid and try and press from our shape, but also we wanted to counter attack when we could. So we thought the best way to maybe go was a back four, four in midfield and a one and a one, with Gerard’s [Deulofeu’s] pace and obviously the pace of [Ismaila] Sarr on the right as well and at times he got us up the pitch really well.

“We came, we set up and we thought it was the best way to try and contain them and then hit them on the break.”

Watford did get into some promising positions but they mustered just four goal attempts, with their one on-target effort coming deep into injury time at the end.

Mullins insisted he was “not disappointed” by this though, and continued: “We came to a very good side tonight. I think the positives we want to take out of it we will. Where the two teams are in the league, to come here and did what we did tonight is a fantastic positive. There’s loads of positives for us to take out of the game tonight and we will.”