Watford manager Xisco Munoz has promised the fans that his “ambitious” players will do all they can to return to the Premier League as champions.
The 1-0 win at home to Sheffield Wednesday, courtesy of a controversial early own goal from Owls defender Tom Lees, brought the Hornets to within six points of leaders Norwich, who host Watford on April 20.
Watford were fifth in the table and four points off the automatic promotion places when the Spaniard took charge in December.
And as he vowed to do everything possible to reclaim the top-flight status that was surrendered last season, he admitted that top spot was one of his targets
“We have seven games more and we will see how many we need for our goal,” he said.
“I promise you we are very ambitious. Everyone wants the best. We are working very hard. We will see, but we are working hard to cut out the mistakes. We try to give the best for our club.
“The first objective is to try to get in the play-offs, the second objective is to try to take second position.
“And if it is possible, because we are working very hard, we will try to arrive at the top.
“We will take it step by step, we are not guaranteed the play-offs so we cannot think about another thing.
“But I promise you that we are very ambitious, the team is very ambitious and everyone wants the best. Everyone is working very hard on the training ground to give their best.
“We will see but I promise you, we will try to give the best for our club.”
Time is running out for second-bottom Wednesday, whose preparations were disrupted on Thursday morning when manager Darren Moore tested positive for Covid-19 and could not travel.
Moore was in telephone contact with assistant manager Jamie Smith, who became the sixth man to take charge of the Owls this season.
“He’s OK,” Smith said of Moore. “He was watching the game and was contact with the analysts over the phone. I don’t know how long I’ll be in charge. We’ll know more in the next couple of days.”
Wednesday were convinced Watford’s goal should not have stood. Linesman Dan Cook raised a flag for offside but was over-ruled by referee Chris Kavanagh after Lees diverted a cross by Ismaila Sarr into his own goal in the seventh minute.
Smith suggested that Sarr had been offside initially – as had Watford striker Isaac Success, whose presence in the box persuaded Lees that he had to make contact with the ball.
“The first pass into Sarr looks offside,” Smith said. “And if he (Success) wasn’t there then Leesy wouldn’t have gone for it. If he doesn’t go for the guy taps it in and he’s offside.”
Smith was confident Wednesday could still get out of trouble.
“I’m disappointed for the players,” he said. “I felt we had done enough to get something but it’s good that we created opportunities.
“There were positives to take from the game and we will continue fighting for every single point. We’ll learn from it and move on.”
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