It’s the battle of the relegation candidates in Norfolk as two teams striving to keep their heads above waters face off for the first of the match day eleven fixtures.
Premier League 2019/20
Venue : Carrow Road
Date : Friday, 7th September 2019
Kick-off : 21:00 PM UK time
TV channel : Sky Sports
Norwich City have not had the best start to life in the topflight and their standing after their first eleven games could imperatively be signifying they will be playing in the second tier come the crack of next season. The Canaries are languishing in 19th with seven points and have lost all but one of their last six games since that impressive win over Manchester City in September.
Daniel Farke could see his position come under some scrutiny if he does not manage to stop the rot starting from this one, and his team continue to falter in their bid for topflight survival.
And then, there’s the matter of Watford who are yet to win any of their opening eleven Premier League games this season, which is the worst start to a league campaign in their entire history. The visitors are in fact, winless in their last fifteen league games, a streak stretching back to April.
But this game presents a perfect opportunity for Quique Sanchez’s side to bag their first league win and climb out of the foot of the table, a chance they simply cannot afford to fluff.
Norwich normally files out in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Teemu Pukki headlining an attack quartet which contains Emiliano Buendia, Todd Cantwell and Marco Stiepermann.
Watford are a much more conservative side with their 3-5-2, with Gerard Deulofeu and Roberto Pereyra leading the goalscoring charges.
Grant Hanley, Timm Klose and Christoph Zimmermann are all out of this tie with varying degrees of injuries. Mario Vrancic is rated as doubtful.
Craig Cathcart pulled up with a back injury against Chelsea last week and will, most likely not feature here while Domingos Quina, Ismaila Sarr, Danny Welbeck and Troy Deeney will all play no part in this fixture.
Sanchez will also have to evaluate the fitness of Etienne Capoue and Tom Cleverley both of who are still not in tip-top conditions.
Norwich City have conceded at least two goals in eight of their last nine Premier League games.
Norwich City have scored at least twice in seven of the last eight games they have played against Watford in all competitions.
Watford have the poorest attack in the Premier League this season having scored just six goals.
Head to head
This will be the 99th meeting between the two clubs. Norwich have the upper hand with 42 wins to Watford’s 27.
29 of these clashes had resulted in a stalemate.
Norwich have been abysmal of late, and have taken just a solitary point from a possible eighteen in their last six games.
Norwich’s last five games (in all competitions) LLDLL
Watford have noticeably improved defensively since October, and were unbeaten in their last three prior to going down 2-1 versus Chelsea last weekend.
Watford’s last five games (in all competitions) LDDDL
Watford’s recent form points markedly to the Hornets earning an overdue victory in the Premier League here, and at a price of 8\5 looks decent enough. If the likes of Andre Gray and Deulofeu can string together some incisive play upfront while remaining compact at the rear, then they will stand a realistic chance of achieving this.
Norwich are one of the teams in the division to have scored in every home game this season, with their 10 goals the joint-fifth highest, while also shipping the second most (14). Watford aren’t the most sternest of defence too as their tally of 23 goals conceded is the third-most, so it is enticing to plump for the over 2.5 goals market which is priced at 4\6.