Quique Sanchez Flores is set to stick with his tried and tested players as he takes his Watford team to Newcastle United in search of a second consecutive Premier League victory.
Deadline-day signings Obbi Oulare, Adlene Guedioura and Victor Ibarbo have yet to break into Flores’ side, although the latter was an unused substitute in Watford’s 1-0 win over Swansea City last weekend.
Flores expects a tough test against struggling Newcastle, who are bottom, at St James’ Park and plans to protect his new additions.
He said: “We will have to wait a little bit more for Ibarbo. He has only been training with us for one week so we have to wait a little longer.
“Oulare, [Nathan] Ake [on loan from Chelsea] or any player that comes to Watford this year will be protected. The Premier League is very aggressive, both physically and technically.
“I am not going to put a player on the pitch who isn’t ready. If that means I have to wait two or three weeks for Oulare that is what I am going to do.
“I would prefer the players to train with us. When they are ready, however, they will be on the pitch.”
Midfielder Valon Behrami and defender Miguel Britos are both suspended for the trip to Newcastle, but Flores has no new injury worries, with only long-term absentee Joel Ekstrand missing out through a knee problem.
Flores is likely to draft midfielder Ben Watson into the starting line-up in place of Behrami, and the Spaniard expressed his faith in the former Wigan man.
“We are very safe with Ben Watson in the team,” said Flores. “He is a serious man and an amazing professional.
“I am very happy with the idea of introducing Watson in the first XI. He deserves it and has been a very important player for the team in the last year.”
Newcastle, who face champions Chelsea and leaders Manchester City in the Premier League after the visit of Watford, could be without seven players for the clash with Flores’ men.
Manager Steve McClaren is without Aleksandar Mitrovic, who is serving a suspension following his sending off against Arsenal, and there are injury doubts over Cheick Tiote, Steven Taylor and Mike Williamson.
Sylvain Marveaux, Paul Dummett and Emmanuel Riviere are long-term absentees for Newcastle, who are without a league win under McClaren.