Watford CEO and chairman Scott Duxbury has promised to learn from mistakes made around player recruitment in a bid to rediscover the club's identity.

In an interview with the From the Rookery End podcast, Duxbury said that such errors played their part in the club's relegation and that after returning to the top flight at the first time of asking, they would not be repeated.

Specifically, the CEO said he would be looking to build a squad of "young" and "hungry" players who wanted to be at the club, while making sure they were well prepared to cope with any problems, such as subsequent relegations further down the line, while remaining competitive in the top flight.

"[We] started to lose our way a little bit in year five with our DNA, signing established Premier League players on huge contracts," said Duxbury.

"We've always been about getting the top young players that will come through, like signing Richarlison and then he moves on, whereas we were signing the Richarlison that was the established Premier League player. And that's not that's not who we are.

"Now we're going to go into the Premier League with a very competitive squad, a really strict and rigid wage structure with young hungry players, complemented with a few senior players, but should the worst happen at any given point - for any team it could happen - we are then able to go down and keep that squad together and we don't have to have huge restructuring because finances dictate that that's what's required.

"That's a huge lesson that we absolutely will implement and make sure that we have that young competitive squad that we believe will keep us in the Premier League for many many years, but if an event happens we're absolutely fine."

The moment when Duxbury realised he had made mistakes came in the wake of Watford's defeat to Arsenal on the last day of the 2019/20 season in which the Hornets' relegation was confirmed.

He said that, while watching the game back, he realised that the club's recruitment had prevented young players from developing.

"We were signing so-called established Premier League players, which meant players like Joao Pedro never kicked the ball, which is not what we're about," he said. "Pedro should have been allowed to progress.

"I remember, much to my dismay, the Arsenal game, watching it back and the commentator said [about Pedro], 'Who is this guy? He's incredible. We've not seen him all season'.

"The players we brought in, that had stopped his progress, was wrong. Undoubtedly we were part of the mistakes and we've learned from that."

In light of this, the aim now for Watford is to keep a squad of players who are focussed on success for the club while moving on anyone not interested in buying into the project.

“Maybe towards the end of our final year in the Premier League, we had assembled a squad that perhaps wasn’t quite as focused on Watford as the squad that we assembled in the Championship,” said Duxbury.

“There will be some I am sure that have ambitions to play elsewhere and if they don’t want to be part of the project, no problem. Move on. We’ll bring people in that want to be part of it."