Preview: Watford v Swans

30th December 2017
First team

Carlos Carvalhal takes charge of Swansea City for the first time this afternoon as they face Watford in the Premier League (3pm).

The Swans are aiming to bounce back at Vicarage Road following their painful 5-0 defeat against Liverpool on Boxing Day.

That result left them five points adrift of safety in the Premier League table, with just 13 points from their opening 20 matches.

However, the Swans will be looking to turn their fortunes around starting against Watford, who have also been struggling for form recently.

In fact, the 2-1 victory over Leicester City on Tuesday ended a run of four consecutive defeats for Marco Silva’s men in the top flight, where they lie 10th in the table.

The Hornets have won each of the last two meetings between the sides but, following the appointment of Carvalhal, the Swans go into the contest with renewed optimism.


Team news

The Swans are waiting to see if Ki Sung-Yueng (calf) will be fit to feature, but there are again doubts over Wilfried Bony (hamstring).

Miguel Britos and Will Hughes are looking to return for Watford, who will be without Troy Deeney through suspension. Long-term absentees Nathaniel Chalobah, Younes Kaboul and Kiko Femenia remain sidelined.


What they said

Carlos Carvalhal: “We must go to the pitch without any fear. We have to try to compete for three points against every opponent. To do that, we must have courage and be strong.”

Watford midfielder Tom Cleverley: “When you’re on a bit of a bad run people start doubting things and doubting the team spirit we’ve got, but we know we’ve got a good set of lads here.”

 


Last six meetings

23.09.17 Swans 1 Watford 2

15.04.17 Watford 1 Swans 0

22.10.16 Swans 0 Watford 0

18.01.16 Swans 1 Watford 0

12.09.15 Watford 1 Swans 0

08.03.11 Swans 1 Watford 1

 


Pre-match stats

21 – Despite struggling against Watford in recent times, the Swans lead the head-to-head record with 21 victories compared to 16 wins for the Hornets.

34 – It is 34 years since Watford did the league double over the Swans. They are looking to change that this weekend having won at the Liberty earlier in the season, but Carvalhal will have other ideas.