Watford host Fulham on Tuesday night in a clash which could see Javi Gracia make multiple changes to the side that lost to Manchester United at the weekend with the Hornets’ FA Cup semi-final clash with Wolves upcoming on Sunday.
Ahead of the visit from the Cottagers, the Spaniard has insisted that fringe man Nathaniel Chalobah still has a part to play for his side despite the immense performances of Abdoulaye Doucoure and Etienne Capoue recently.
Well, speaking about the former Chelsea man, Gracia said:
“I think Chalobah was injured for a long period and after he needed time to recover. Now he is in a better condition and I think he can help us. But there are other players ready as well. I try to choose the best option.
“In my opinion, the most important thing is if he is fit and available to play. He is ready to compete in this moment and better than, for example, a couple of months ago.”
Indeed, the midfielder spent most of last season recovering from a serious knee injury and has struggled to regain a place in the starting XI since, making only seven Premier League appearances this campaign while the aforementioned Frenchmen go from strength to strength in the middle of the park.
However, the congested run of fixtures has maybe given Gracia the chance to afford some of his fringe players – Chalobah included – a run-out against Scott Parker’s side, who could be relegated if they suffer defeat at Vicarage Road.
Doucoure and Capoue have certainly earned rests and Gracia will want them to be in perfect shape ahead of the massive game this weekend at Wembley.
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Chalobah could replace either at the base of midfield in what will surely be a testing game, regardless of the difference in league positions, due to the consequences for their visitors if they take nothing back to Craven Cottage. What do you think, Watford fans? Would you like to see the 24-year-old feature more often? Let us know in the comments below.