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Mazzarri to strengthen Watford squad

Watford manager Walter Mazzarri is still hoping to add two or three new players to his squad as the start of the new Premier League season approaches.

Watford begin their campaign away to Southampton on Saturday, and while they have been relatively quiet in the transfer window, Mazzarri has received permission from the club’s owners, the Pozzo family, to bring in reinforcements.

“The club has given me the possibility to go ahead with two or three new players,” he said through an interpreter at his formal presentation to the media.

“They say it’s no problem if we need them, and I think we need them. I prefer not to go into too much detail but it will probably be one of each position of defence, midfield and forward.”

Watford, who have signed Christian Kabasele, Jerome Sinclair, Isaac Success and Brice Dja Djedje, face a tough opening to the season, with the clash against the Saints followed by meetings with Chelsea, Arsenal, West Ham and Manchester United.

While Mazzarri is the seventh coach in five seasons at Vicarage Road, taking over from Quique Sanchez Flores, the former Napoli and Inter boss claimed he is not under immediate pressure to perform.

“I spoke with the club and being a new manager, but also an experienced one, they allowed me to evaluate the players already at the club first. This is what I have been doing until now,” he said.

“I think that at the moment only about improving the team. I’m not thinking about last year’s points or this year’s points. I’m thinking about growing match by match and how we can do that in the best possible way.”

Mazzarri, who has a strong preference for using a 3-5-2 formation, also has a reputation as a disciplinarian.

However, while he does not allow his players smoke, the Italian had to deny reports he himself lit up during a half-time talk in a recent friendly against QPR.

“It’s not true that I was smoking in the dressing room. This was pure invention. Yes, nobody’s perfect. I do smoke,” he said.

“But I wouldn’t allow a player or even my son to smoke. Because of my job there are some things that make you feel better and smoking is one of them.”

Thu 11 Aug, 2016
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