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Watford v Crystal Palace: Watson wants Vicarage Road rocking

Ben Watson wants the Watford fans to get Vicarage Road “rocking” again when they host Crystal Palace on Sunday.

Quique Sanchez Flores’ side recorded their first Premier League win of the campaign in their last home outing, defeating Swansea City 1-0 thanks to a goal from in-form striker Odion Ighalo.

Midfielder Watson believes the home supporters played a large part in helping Watford triumph on that day – and has called for more of the same this weekend.

“I thought – especially when we scored the goal against Swansea – that’s the best I’ve seen them at home since the game when we beat Middlesbrough last year,” he told the club’s official website.

“The place was rocking and when they’re like that, that’s what makes you want to play.

“You just want to be involved. When the team’s doing well and winning games, the crowd are happy and they’re behind you.”

Watford followed up their victory over Swansea with a 2-1 win away at Newcastle United.

Ighalo netted both their goals at St James’ Park, taking his tally to 20 in 24 league appearances in 2015 – more than any other player in the top four tiers of English football.

And the Nigerian’s strike partnership with Troy Deeney has caught the eye of Palace manager Alan Pardew.

“I’m a big fan of Deeney. I’ve tried to sign him in the past. Him and Ighalo are good up front and we need to deal with that,” Pardew said.

“They’re very fortunate, Watford [to have such an effective strike force]. You look at them and they’ve handled the division very well.”

Palace, meanwhile, will not be worried by the short road trip to Vicarage Road. They have picked up 15 points from their last seven league fixtures away from Selhurst Park, including a stunning 2-1 win at champions Chelsea last month.

Pardew saw his team draw a blank in a 1-0 reverse at Tottenham last weekend, but they put four past Charlton Athletic in the League Cup in midweek.

Dwight Gayle grabbed a hat-trick in that 4-1 win but has yet to start a Premier League match this season. Connor Wickham could also come into consideration for a place up front, with the former Sunderland striker set to return from a rib injury.

Watford will be without the suspended Valon Behrami and the injured Joel Ekstrand.

Fri 25 Sep, 2015
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