Chances created but lack of goals a problem for Watford boss

Dig a little deeper and you see that of those 55, only 10 were actually on target – although a further 23 were blocked, so it may be that some last-ditch defending prevented more work for the opposition keepers.

Nonetheless, it’s a lot of efforts at the goal without reward.

“I’m pleased that we create chances and we play good football,” said head coach Valerien Ismael.

“We put our players in good positions, and for sure I’m not pleased that we have scored only four goals.

“I’m pleased that defensively we are strong. We didn’t concede a lot of chances to the opponents which mean they have to be ruthless and clinical against us.

“I see some positive points in our development with the squad, but we have to work on the next bit and the next bit, then we will improve.”

As he has said several times, Ismael oversaw the departure of a large number of players during the summer, and the Watford squad now carries less experience and numbers than it did before he arrived at Vicarage Road.

“We are in transition. We reshaped the squad and we reshaped the mindset. It was a massive clean out in the summer,” he said.

“We’re playing with a young team on the pitch, and it’s always the case to be patient, even when we want to win games and we want to score goals.

“Today it wasn’t enough to win the game.”

The Watford boss said that his side need the lift of getting ahead in a game, like they had on the first day of the season.

“I think we created the same chances as we did against QPR, the difference was we scored straight away and the first goal gives you big relief,” he said.

“If you score the first goal then maybe you become more calm and less hectic in the opponent’s box.

“If it stays 0-0 then you get tense and you are wanting to score, and the decision making won’t be the same.

“We put ourselves in a great position every time. I’m pleased with what I see and how we play football, how we create chances, how we control the game.

“What you need then is to work on staying calm and the decision making – not to force things, not to lose the ball too easily.

“It’s an adjustment we have to make with the players, but we will continue in our way.

“We are pleased with the way we play, and when we come through when things are right it looks really good.

“We need to continue to play like that and at some point we will change the moment.”

As well as changing the mentality and style of play, Ismael is also balancing the need to integrate new signings.

“We need to get the players on the same level. Tom Ince came on for the second time and it was much better than last week, so we see an improvement in that area.

“We have room to improve. We’ve now got Mileta Rajovic, our new striker, who will give us another option on this position with Vakoun Bayo.

“Other players will come back, like Francisco Sierralta, and we need to stay focussed for sure.

“The result is not what we expected but the Championship is a long run.

“This is the Championship, we know how it is and in two or three months things can look completely different.

“We will have a turnaround but it’s difficult to take when with their only chance in the second half the opponents win the game.

“That is the beauty of football. Everything is possible: all the possession and all the chances you get doesn’t mean that you win the game.”

Watford Observer | St. Albans News