The Football League Paper - - NEWS -

WATCH­ING Wat­ford has been a thrilling ex­pe­ri­ence this sea­son. On their day, the Hor­nets are the best coun­ter­at­tack­ing side in the di­vi­sion.

They’ve got play­ers with sump­tu­ous skill like Al­men Abdi, pace like Matej Vy­dra and raw, bound­less po­ten­tial like Nathaniel Chalobah.

OK, so they’re all on loan. But ig­nore the whingers and naysay­ers who moan that their ex­ploita­tion of the sys­tem is un­fair, or that the soul has been ripped from the club.

Wat­ford haven’t bro­ken any rules. And be­ing owned by the same fam­ily who own Udi­nese doesn’t make Wat­ford a feeder club.

Truth is, they were more of a feeder club be­fore the takeover when, skint and strug­gling, they had to sell their best play­ers to the first Pre­mier League club who came call­ing with a hefty pay cheque.

The only rea­son op­po­si­tion fans and man­agers com­plain about Wat­ford is be­cause they’re jeal­ous.

They’d all do it if they could, and in a heart­beat.

Alas, if the sys­tem has one flaw it is that for­eign play­ers aren’t used to slog­ging out a 46game sea­son.

Watch­ing Wat­ford against Leeds on the fi­nal day and then Le­ices­ter in the play­offs, the unavoid­able con­clu­sion is that the Hor­nets are flat out knackered.

Abdi is ef­fec­tive in bursts but no longer dom­i­nates a game.

Where once Vy­dra left de­fend­ers for dead, now he runs on the spot like Shaggy from ScoobyDoo.

Yet even if they fall, Wat­ford have been a credit to the di­vi­sion.

If peo­ple look ob­jec­tively, they will hope­fully see an own­er­ship model that brings both fi­nan­cial sta­bil­ity and suc­cess.

And at the end of the day, isn’t that what ev­ery­one wants?

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