Watford are due to entertain Chelsea tonight at the Vicarage Road. The Hornets will be without the services of Younes Kaboul, Miguel Britos, Kiko Femenia, Will Hughes, Isaac Success, Craig Cathcart and Nathaniel Chalobah when they face Antonio Conte’s men as all of them are out injured. Heurelho Gomes is also likely to remain sidelined due to his back injury.
Javi Gracia will be delighted with bagging even a single point from the upcoming fixture and here is how we expect him to roll out his starting line-up against Chelsea.
The home side could go with Orestis Karnezis once again to cater to their goalkeeping needs. Karnezis has been quite solid as a deputy for the injured first-choice goalkeeper in the shape of Gomes as he has produced a string of top quality outings and deserves to be placed between the sticks.
Gracia is likely to roll out a defensive wall of four men. While Sebastian Prodl and Christian Kabasele are likely to be stationed at the heart of the defence of the Golden Boys, Adrian Mariappa is expected to line up in the right-back slot. Jose Holebas should keep his place in the left-back position.
Etienne Capoue is likely to operate from the deeper position in the midfield. The 29-year-old has an uphill task of absorbing the pressure coming from the attacking endeavours of the Blues and must shield the backline meticulously to save the blushes of his employers.
Tom Cleverley is expected to get the nod to start by Gracia from the left side of the midfield. He hasn’t really been able to break the shackles and has flattered to deceive so far this season. He needs to uplift the quality of his offensive and creative prowess to breach Conte’s defence in the upcoming fixture.
Abdoulaye Doucoure is likely to be stationed on the right-hand side of the midfield. Doucoure has smashed 7 goals so far in the English top flight this season and he must be keen to add more goals to his tally, particularly when he faces a big club like Chelsea.
Although Troy Deeney was used against the Potters, we expect to see Andre Gray leading Watford’s line against the reigning English champions. Gray has the pace to trouble the defence of the opposition and that might prove to be beneficial for his club.
From the right-wing, Gerard Deulofeu is expected to start once again whereas, from the left-wing, Richarlison should keep his place and will be a threat throughout.