Watford’s roller coaster season was suspended just above the drop zone, as there’s been plenty of fun for the Hornets after an 11-match winless run to start the Premier League campaign.
The Hornets — for now — look to have saved their season with an inexplicably strong navigation of the congested festive fixtures, and they’ll continue to relish ending Liverpool’s run at a perfect season.
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Individual grades, however? Those are a bit tougher.
Below we give each Hornets player a grade, ranking and group them together based on their season(s) so far.
If a Watford player is listed in this ranking it is because they’ve played in more than five games in all competitions.
Etienne Capoue: The Hornets leader in tackles and interceptions doesn’t get the acclaim of Abdoulaye Doucoure, but this year he’s been better for the side. Come to think of it, last year, too.
Gerard Deulofeu: His torn ACL in the big upset of Liverpool. Snapped to life under Nigel Pearson to propel Watford out of the bottom three.
Troy Deeney: The club legend has taken a beating in producing six goals and two assists in 18 appearances. Deeney’s 7.6 aerials won per match is second only to Sebastien Haller.
Ismaila Sarr: There’s still work to do in adjusting to the Premier League, but just ask Liverpool how he can change a game (or season).
Christian Kabasele: The big center back remains with the Vicarage Road set, which is a serious boon to the Hornets. His 5.2 clearances per game join 1.6 tackles and 1.7 interceptions to make another fine line on the resume.
Abdoulaye Doucoure: At his best, he makes the Hornets a force in the middle of the park but this season was a step back in attacking production.
Craig Cathcart: A steady if unspectacular season doing a little bit of everything at the back. Call it a C-plus.
Will Hughes: After two-straight seasons of improvement, Hughes slipped a little bit. The versatile midfielder also missed out on two of Watford’s five wins.
Andre Gray: Was having the least productive season of his career, with two goals in 716 minutes.
Roberto Pereyra: Still capable of the sublime, but he’s done it so rarely this season. Also saw his minutes sliced nearly in half.
Isaac Success, Domingos Quina, Ignacio Pussetto, Sebastian Prodl, Dimitru Foulquier