Watford V Stoke at Vicarage Road Stadium : Match Preview

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26 November 2016
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Walter Mazzarri wants to see angry version of Watford against Stoke

Walter Mazzarri wants his Watford players to maintain the level of anger to their performance as they look to follow up their win over Leicester with victory against Stoke.

The Hornets were humbled by a 6-1 thrashing at Liverpool before the international break, with Mazzarri stewing over the display until he got all of his players back from their respective duties.

The Italian declared last week that he wanted his squad to be "as angry as him" to get a result and they delivered with a 2-1 success over the champions.

That victory means Watford sit eighth in the Premier League heading into this weekend's matches, just a point shy of Manchester United.

But the former Inter Milan boss wants the same intensity as the Leicester game when they welcome Stoke to Vicarage Road for Sunday's noon kick-off.

"This has been the subject of the whole week at the training ground," he said when asked if he wants the anger to remain.

"Now we have to continue getting the positive results, and this is what an important team has to make the next big step.

"We have to go onto the pitch angry as when we went against Leicester, and always thinking that we lost the previous game, so we have to come back as angry as we were then.

"The important thing is to go altogether with great team spirit and continue to fight."

Mazzarri revealed Younes Kaboul suffered a knock in training and may miss out against the Potters.

Craig Cathcart (groin) and Isaac Success (foot) are longer-term absentees, while Odion Ighalo is likely to be on the bench again having been dropped last weekend.

Stoke will be without influential midfielder Joe Allen.

The Welshman, the Potters' top scorer this term, is suspended, leaving boss Mark Hughes light in the midfield department given Glenn Whelan (calf) is a doubt and Geoff Cameron (knee) remains out.

Full-back Phil Bardsley (knee) will miss a number of weeks, along with Ibrahim Afellay (knee), though England international goalkeeper Jack Butland (ankle) is close to a comeback.

Stoke's record signing Giannelli Imbula could return, with Hughes hoping a frank talk with the midfielder can help him rediscover his form.

"We had an honest conversation when he went out of the team and I made it clear there were aspects of his game he needed to improve if he wanted to progress in a really difficult league," Hughes said.

"He's working hard and still a young man, in fairness, and this is a big step for him. We've got to be patient because he's going to be here for a long time.

"G is a little bit frustrated and he was honest enough to say that, given the amount of ability he has, he wasn't able to impact games.

"He needed to go out of the team, but we've had a really good response on the training pitch and his focus is very much on getting back into the team.

"It could be this weekend. He's a viable option given the circumstances. His training and his work is first class at the moment, so I'd have no qualms involving him."


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