Watford's focus remains firmly on their game against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge this evening, according to assistant coach Craig Shakespeare.

Speaking ahead of the difficult away fixture, the Hornets' number two reiterated a point made by Nigel Pearson before last week's defeat to Southampton, that only focusing on games against teams around them in the league is not a healthy way to view the remainder of the season.

With matches against Norwich, Newcastle and fellow strugglers West Ham coming up, it has been suggested that those games are the most important for Watford if they are to survive relegation this season.

However, after the Irons took all three points against Chelsea in a midweek match, Shakespeare, knows there are still chances to get points from the more difficult games.

Asked if he had identified any weaknesses in the Blues' team following that defeat to West Ham, he responded by saying it was much more important for his team to focus on themselves rather than their opposition.

"Even if I have [identified weaknesses], our job is to make sure that the players are ready to play," he said. "They know about the opposition, they know their strengths and weaknesses, but they also know what we're about as well and know our strengths.

"We know what we've got to do, we know how many games are left. You can have an idea of a points total, but the biggest thing is to make sure you're focused for the next one because if you start thinking about the second game ahead, the third game ahead, the fourth game ahead [it doesn't help], you have to really make sure that the focus is on the next game."

Following defeats to both Burnley and Southampton, the Hornets have had some open and honest conversations about why things were not going to plan at the moment.

While captain Troy Deeney described them as "uncomfortable" conversations, Shakespeare claimed the discussions were constructive and said that the team has looked happy and determined on the training pitch since the players opened up.

"I disagree with [Deeney] to a certain extent, I found them really comfortable because they are constructive," he said.

"They are where we're at and we're all men and we all take things on the chin and we move on and that's what we've been expressing. Players have been given the opportunity to speak openly and honestly and we as staff have, but I have to say in terms of seeing them in the training pitch after, I've been pleasantly surprised with the way things have been.

"There hasn't been doom and gloom, there's been smiles which we want but also we want that drive to make sure that we put performances in that reflect our character as well. Uncomfortable discussions, I know what Troy means by that, but I found them very constructive, I found them very open and very honest."