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Nigel Pearson backs Ismaila Sarr to make impact in Watford’s survival fight

Watford manager Nigel Pearson has backed Ismaila Sarr to make a positive impact on the club’s bid to avoid relegation from the Premier League.

The Senegal international scored twice on Saturday as the Hornets brought Liverpool’s 44-match unbeaten league streak to an end in a 3-0 win at Vicarage Road. Sarr also set up Troy Deeney to add the final goal.

Sarr made his first start since being sidelined through injury in January against Jurgen Klopp’s side.

Pearson said: “Clearly he’s a player that has had an impact coming back into the side, and a very telling one too, I think he’s going to be important for us.

“I think he’s a player with lots of potential, but he’s one of our players and his responsibility will be – I’m very reluctant to put too much emphasis on one player, but I also have to recognise that his qualities give us something very different.

“So if we can keep him fit and reproduce the type of form that he has been producing, then I think that it would be obviously that we have a player who’s a real match winner and that’s very, very important for us.”

Sarr joined the Hornets in the summer for a reported club-record fee of £25million on a five-year deal but had a limited impact, scoring just four goals prior to last weekend’s win.

The Hornets boss added: “The good thing about him is he’s decided that he wants to play regular football, he’s decided to come to us, we’ve invested a lot of money in him relatively speaking for a young player and he’s still got things to learn of course.

“But his ability and his physical attributes mean as a modern player, he’s potentially going to have a very good career for sure.”