Earlier in the season, Watford had a run of scoring at least once in 13 consecutive games.

Now they have not found the net in their last three, and have not scored in open play in the five games since Jake Livermore’s double at QPR in mid-January.

However, Valerien Ismael is not unduly concerned about the current goalless run.

“I think the issue is always the same, to be ruthless in front of goal. We don’t have any problem in attacking, if you see our ranking at the moment we are good,” he said.

“It is always a warning when you are not creating chances, but we are creating chances.

“It’s more that we need to get the freshness back. In our last games we looked a little bit exhausted in some situations from the travel and the schedule.

“The sharpness and decision making was not there, we made simple mistakes.

“We’ve had three days between games and that is much more manageable for us and the players.

“We just need to refocus and get the freshness back on the pitch.

“I am not worried: I know we can create chances and score goals, and we can play great football.”

Ismael made seven changes to his starting XI for the cup replay at Southampton on Tuesday, but Tom Ince remained on the bench.

The forward has played a combined 90 minutes since the beginning of December, and his last start was in the reverse fixture at Leicester on November 25.

“I think it’s always the case of the situation,” said the Watford head coach.

“Some players need more minutes. It’s tough period for him at the moment but we will need everyone.

“He is a great professional who trains well and is positive. He pushes the other players.

“At some point his time will come.”

Since comfortably beating Watford 2-0 in November, Leicester have lost only once in 15 league and cup games.

They thumped Stoke 5-0 at the Bet365 Stadium last weekend, and currently sit 11 points clear of second-placed Southampton.

Yet some of their fans on social medial and online have been critical of their style of play, citing a lack of entertainment despite the hugely impressive results.

How high up the list of priorities for a head coach should entertainment come?

“It doesn’t matter if you’re Watford, Leicester, Leeds, Southampton or any other team in the Championship - at some point it will become about the result, and trying to get back into the Premier League,” said Ismael.

“You just need to make the right decision and find the way to do what is important.

“Getting back in the Premier League will make people happy – or is it more important to make everyone happy by playing football where you have to accept losing more games because you have to take more risks?

“I would like to have that problem: top of the league with an 11-point lead, and everyone discussing my way of playing football!”