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Preview: A closer look at AFC Bournemouth's opponents this weekend, Watford

Posted: Fri 26 Feb 2016
Joshua King and Watford's Allan Nyom.

Joshua King battles with Allan Nyom in the fixture between AFC Bournemouth and Watford.

AFC Bournemouth travel to Vicarage Road in their latest Barclays Premier League fixture and took a closer look at Watford.

Nickname: The Hornets
Manager: Quique Sanchez Flores
Captain: Troy Deeney
Ground: Vicarage Road
Capacity: 21,577
2014-15: 2nd
Current Position: 9th

So far this season
Alongside the Cherries, fellow promoted side Watford have been one of the surprise packages of the Barclays Premier League season so far.

Currently sitting in 9th place, Quique Sanchez Flores has instilled a disciplined mentality into his Watford side, which has seen them rack up 36 points from 26 games.

After a strong end to 2015, which saw them secure four consecutive wins, including an impressive 3-0 win over Liverpool in front of the Sky Sports cameras, they endured a disappointing January winning just one of their four top flight games.

However, with only one defeat in their last four Premier League games and a place in the Emirates FA Cup quarter finals, the Hornets appear to be back on track.

The manager's thoughts
Eddie Howe praised the work of Quique Sanchez Flores in his first full season in charge in his press conference, and Flores has been equally complimentary about the Cherries in the build-up to Saturday’s match.

"We're expecting a difficult game. We know how Bournemouth have been working since the last year, they play like a team, they fight a lot during 90 minutes and their idea is very clear," Flores said.

"They showed when they won the Championship that they are able to win in every single stadium, so we need to prepare well and to read the situation well.

"We will play at Vicarage Road, with our fans and our spirit, and I think it will be a very good match."

Last time against the Cherries
AFC Bournemouth 1-1 Watford
Saturday 3rd October 2016
Vitality Stadium

Glenn Murray netted his first goal since his summer arrival on the south coast, heading beyond the sprawling Heurelho Gomes to give the Cherries an early lead. However, the Hornets struck back on the stroke of half time, with confusion at the back allowing Odion Ighalo to nick the ball and slot past Artur Boruc. The Cherries nearly had the last laugh, but having already beaten him once that afternoon, Murray couldn’t convert a late penalty beyond Gomes, who was in impressive form.

Star player
Whilst Odion Ighalo has rightfully been the recipient of a number of plaudits for his incredible 2015, his strike partner Troy Deeney’s contribution should not go un-noticed.

Eddie Howe acknowledged the duo’s threat in his post match press conference, and in truth it is hard who is the biggest threat from the pairing, who have 22 goals between them this season.

Club captain Deeney, who has chipped in with numerous assists so far this season also netted his first Premier League brace in their last top flight game against Crystal Palace.

Deeney was injured the last time the two sides met back at Vicarage Road in September 2014, but the last time the Cherries came to town and he was available, he scored a hat-trick in a 6-1 win.

Team news
The Hornets made changes, like the Cherries, in their FA Cup tie last weekend, but in that game Miguel Britos returned in defence and is likely to keep his place.

Jose Manuel Jurado will miss out, having missed the past two games with a calf injury. 

Head to head
• There has been a penalty in all of the past five meetings between the sides.
• There have also been two red cards in those past five meetings.
• 1-1 is a common score-line between the two sides – three of the five times the sides have faced each other over the past three seasons have ended 1-1.