Match Preview – Brighton v Watford

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Watford – the team
Watford are in their third season in the Premier League with their third different manager at the helm. Prior to that, they worked their way through approximately 72 managers in their quest to reach the promised land. For all we hear about stability being the best way to run a football club, Watford seem to thrive in a constant state of organised chaos. Up until recently they had been enjoying one of their best seasons in living memory under the guidance of Marco Silva, who as a result was wanted by Everton and is still being monitored by a number of the continents big boys. They’ve fallen away recently and a Brighton win today would actually see us go above them in the table. Unfortunately, that would involve us actually scoring a goal.

Watford – the place
Watford’s one redeeming feature was that if you added the letter ‘t’ before its name, you could create a rude word. And even in that stakes if fell short of Sussex’s very own Uckfield with an additional ‘f’. In more recent times, it has become famous for being the town where the Harry Potter Studios are based. Potterholics can go there to drink Butterbeer, ride the Knightbus and check out the Great Hall. All sounds great doesn’t it until you realise that unfortunately, you can’t enter Hermione Granger’s Chamber of Secrets.

Watford – the people
The Hornet’s most famous fan is none other than Elton John, who even owned the club through their most successful period as they rose through the divisions to reach the top flight under the management of Graham Taylor in the 1980s. This made the one occasion we encountered some homophobic Watford fans particularly ironic.

A good WeAreBrighton.com memory of Watford at home
Watford have never lost at the Amex and are unbeaten on their last five visits to Sussex. The last time they tasted defeat at Brighton came in January 2005 when Leon Knight and Kerry Mayo scored in a 2-1 win for Mark McGhee’s side. It was another game in which McGhee’s team selection involved some classic selection bingo while sniffing glue as Paul Watson started in central midfielder.

A bad WeAreBrighton.com memory of Watford at home
We took a Watford supporting friend into the home end for the Hornets last visit to the Amex in April 2015 as she couldn’t get a ticket in the away section. Watford of course won promotion that day and those celebrations coupled with the lunchtime kick off meant a lot of sick being deposited in Temple Bar on Western Road by both our guest and some of the less esteemed members of the WeAreBrighton.com team. The hangover lasted four days.

Played for both
It’s mad to think that only six years ago some of us needed in punching in the face to make us believe we weren’t dreaming and the Albion were actually spending £1.5m on a player. That was of course Will Buckley who became the most expensive signing in Brighton history when he arrived from Watford in 2011. Oscar Garcia also had a brief spell in charge at Vicarage Road once he’d finished cleaning his coffee table after his resignation from Brighton.

Dangermen
Andre Gray loves playing against the Albion and has four goals in five league appearances against us from his time with Brentford and Burnley. It will be a real test for Connor Goldson on his first league appearance since his heart operation dealing with him.

Betting
Seems obvious given that we’ve drawn five out of nine games at the Amex so far this season, but we’re plumping on the draw given that and the fact that Watford have a good record on their recent trips south. If you fancy a bolder bet, you can pick Brighton to score between the 41st and 50th minute at 8/1. This has happened five times this season as we’ve missed every goal either buying or drinking a pint. Curse the taste of flat, warm Fosters in a plastic cup for being so alluring.

Prediction
Two teams who will not want to lose rather than winning. Going to be another draw but we’ve got to score at some point so 1-1.

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