Premier League 2018/19: How Javi Gracia's Watford are still unbeaten
Watford currently sit joint-top of the Premier League table with a 100% win record after three games. Using these games as reference, we can analyse the tactics deployed by Javi Gracia that have made them unbeatable thus far.
Under Gracia this season, Watford have looked solid and organised in their two banks of four off the ball, while also being given their creative players freedom. They have so far used the same lineup in all of their four games, The traditional 4-4-2 formation. The 4-4-2 formation infuriates the other teams on defensive, and moreover, the wide players can drift and get involved in the attack. The balanced formation in all aspects.
José Holebas and Daryl Janmaat in this formation (4-4-2) offer the width to Javi Gracia's plans. So these two fullbacks go forward contributing the team a proper width during the play just in to give the right crosses usually.
We also witnessed a stunning Holebas goal on Matchday 3, i.e., Watford vs. Crystal Palace. The intention was to cross the ball as seen but instead, it was a goal out of the blue, and the goal was more than welcome as it doubled Watford's lead.
In Conclusion, we could say, the fullbacks are a part of the attack by going forward and providing width to the team.
Now that the fullbacks offer width, the wide midfielders get the license to cut in and the freedom to show their creativity.
Roberto Pereyra and Will Hughes get their creative freedom, and they look to attack through the center of the field thus balancing the attack.
Étienne Capoue and Abdoulaye Doucouré are a solid central midfield duo. They are very comfortable with the possession game, and they also get chances to dart upfield.
In conclusion, Either one of the holding Midfielders get a chance to go up front, meanwhile both the wide midfielders cut inside since the fullbacks are providing width.
With the defense and midfield doing most the work, Troy Deeney and Andre Gray usually get the chances to finish it off.
Deeney is generally a very unselfish player, with his physicality he forces at least 2 defenders to try and come ahead of their line, thus allowing Andre gray use his blistering form and make runs ahead. Deeney compliments Gray for his acceleration, movement creating more chances towards goals.
Conclusion: The team looks very comfortable with their roles resulting in their victories and a 100% win record so far.
Watford have scored nine goals in four matches, which is about 2.25 goals per match, and have conceded only three so far in the Premier League. They have had one clean-sheet so far and might well extend their winning streak.