Saturday saw Watford’s long wait for a win in the Premier League continue as they held out a scoreless draw at Vicarage Road.
With 10 games gone, the Hornets sit at the bottom of the Premier League with no league win in the whole season. However, while things haven’t quite taken off like they would have hoped, the two back-to-back home clean sheets show that actions have been taken to eradicate the defensive problems at the back.
Last week, Watford had the worst defensive record in the division, but thanks to Southampton conceding nine and Norwich conceding three, they are now off the bottom for most goals conceded.
An important part of this improvement at the back would have to be Quique Sanchez Flores’ change of formation to five at the back, which has evidently made things more difficult for opposition teams.
Individual performances were clearly better when they faced Bournemouth on Saturday, with great performances all across the back-line, especially from a certain Daryl Janmaat. Despite the Watford Observer only thinking the 30-year-old was deserved of a 6/10, his stats from the match suggest that he was much more useful than that – both in attack and defence.
The Observer report states: “The Dutch full-back was arguably one of Watford’s better players going forward, although he lost possession in some good advanced positions.
“He also left quite a bit of space in behind and did struggle to get back on occasions.”
Janmaat was an important player on the ball for his side and his performance was rated much higher by WhoScored’s algorithm, who said he was the second player on the pitch for them (7.23/10), behind Man of the Match Ben Foster.
The Dutchman was seen all around the pitch on Saturday had more touches (64) on the ball than any other player in a yellow shirt. Additionally, despite getting forward often in the right wing-back position, he made a lot of defensive contributions. Three tackles, two interceptions and three clearances were all important for his side to ensure a clean sheet.
Going forward he was also a threat, having one dribble, he made 32 passes as well as four crosses – the second-highest in the team. All in all, it was a strong day for the former Newcastle United man.
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