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Watford sack head coach Quique Sanchez Flores

By Gideon Nweke | Dec 01, 2019 | sports
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Watford have sacked Quique Sanchez Flores as their head coach.

Telegraph Sport exclusively revealed last Tuesday that Sanchez Flores was on the brink of losing his job after overseeing just one Premier League win since returning to the club in September, and Watford dropping back into the bottom three.

 

The Spaniard, who was aware of his fate, met with the club’s hierarchy at the training ground on Sunday morning following the 2-1 defeat on Saturday evening away to Southampton.

 

That result left Watford – who had led after a first Premier League goal by £40 million record signing Ismaila Sarr – bottom of the table and six points from safety having played a game more than 17th placed Everton and 16th placed Aston Villa.

Less than 90 days after his return, Sanchez Flores has taken charge of his last game at Vicarage Road.

 

A club statement said: "Quique is a man of great integrity and it was clear how much he wanted to have a positive impact, but ultimately results have dictated our decision.

"The appointment of a new Head Coach is imminent, and with nearly two-thirds of the season remaining, we will provide all the support necessary to make the coming months successful."

 

Sanchez Flores was reappointed on a two-year deal to succeed Javi Gracia - who was sacked after 20 months as head coach after a surprisingly poor start to the season - but he has failed to get the response Watford need to turn the situation around. He has overseen just 10 league games - with his team scoring just seven league goals - and was relieved of his duties after a meeting with owner Gino Pozzo.

 

 

It means Watford are – again – searching for a new head coach, although the club tend to always have a successor lined up when they come to making a change. Quique Flores’ return was announced within minutes of Gracia being sacked and it would be a surprise if Watford do not make another swift announcement.

 

Sanchez Flores spent 10 minutes after the defeat against Southampton – who are also in the bottom three – facing questions about his future and knew he was facing dismissal.

Watford began to think about making a change following the 3-0 home defeat against Burnley, with talks held over Sanchez Flores’ future and concern that a coach renowned for organising his defence had allowed such a defeat.

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Watford were desperate for Sanchez Flores to turn things around but accepted that they are heading towards relegation unless they again did something dramatic. The nature of Saturday’s loss to Southampton, conceding two late goals and not being able to see out the game, was the last straw. They are likely to turn to a manager who is out of work and therefore readily available. Their next league game is away to high-flying Leicester City on Wednesday before facing Crystal Palace at home next Saturday during a critical run of games.

Sanchez Flores led Watford to 13th in the league in their first season back to the Premier League in 2015-16, and the FA Cup semi-finals, but left after just one campaign in charge. This time he has not even made it that far.

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