Lineups

Watford

( 4-4-2 )

  • 1. B. Foster

  • 15. C. Cathcart Goal

  • 27. C. Kabasele

  • 21. Kiko Femenía

    75'
  • 6. B. Wilmot Yellow Card

  • 8. T. Cleverley

  • 14. N. Chalobah

  • 12. K. Sema

    66'
  • 20. Domingos Quina

    90'
  • 10. João Pedro

  • 3. J. Ngakia

Substitutes

  • 26. D. Bachmann

  • 31. F. Sierralta

  • 32. Marc Navarro

    75'
  • 33. I. Pussetto

  • 52. Phillips Daniel

    90'
  • 24. J. Sinclair

  • 17. Murray Glenn

    66'

England - Championship

85' B. Wilmot 85' Yellow Card 85'  B. Wilmot 11' C. Cathcart 11' Goal 11'   Cathcart C. Cathcart
Watford

Watford

1 - 0

Middlesbrough

Middlesbrough

  • 11
    1 - 0
  • HT
    1 - 0
  • Date: 11/09/2020
  • Time: 19:45
  • Referee: Keith Stroud
Watford v Middlesbrough - Preview

Date published: 9/9/2020 7:56:04 PM

Watford v Middlesbrough - Preview

New Watford boss Vladimir Ivic optimistic ahead of Championship opener

New Watford manager Vladimir Ivic is feeling positive ahead of his first competitive game in the dugout.

The 43-year-old took charge at Vicarage Road on a one-year contract in August following the club’s relegation from the Premier League.

He leads the Hornets for the first time when the Sky Bet Championship kicks off with their home clash against Middlesbrough on Friday.

Ivic will have to do so without captain Troy Deeney and key winger Ismaila Sarr, who are not ready to feature, but believes the limited pre-season will leave plenty of other clubs in the same boat when it comes to the availability of players.

“Everyone will know that this period was not easy for no one,” the Serbian said.

“Not just for us, because with the Covid situation this is a problem with our players, with our staff, which is some quarantine and some of the practice, maybe not a lot and not enough, but this is the game and will be the same for all the teams.

“(It’s) difficult for all coaches and that means we must be careful and protect some of them to not get injured because it will be very difficult for the players.

“All this period and this pre-season we didn’t complete how we want, but as I said it’s the same for all the teams. We will see how we go in the league.”

Middlesbrough have already kicked off their season with a 4-3 win over Shrewsbury in the opening round of the Carabao Cup – their first home win since Boxing Day – but Ivic remains confident.

“Yes, beginning in England, beginning in the Championship for me, first game I am positive,” he added. “I work with a positive group of players who are ready to give their best for the week.

“We had around a month to prepare our team for the start of the Championship, first game start on Friday. We worked hard in these previous weeks and these last days and in the last few days we prepare our team for the first game against Middlesbrough.”

Watford bolstered their defensive ranks on Wednesday with the signing of centre-back Francisco Sierralta from Udinese on a three-year contract.

The one-cap Chile international, 23, joined the Serie A club in August 2017 and has since spent time on loan with Parma and Empoli.

Championship Betting Tips: Watford v Middlesbrough

Date published: 9/9/2020 7:59:26 PM

Championship Betting Tips: Watford v Middlesbrough

The 2020-21 Championship season begins on Friday as Watford begin life back in the second tier after a five-year absence at home to Neil Warnock’s Middlesbrough.

It’s a less than ideal start for the hosts, who have just lost key midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure (signed by Everton) while several more star names - Andre Gray, Will Hughes, Etienne Capoue, Roberto Pereyra, Danny Welbeck, Adam Masina, Troy Deeney, Ismaila Sarr and Gerard Deulofeu - are unavailable for new manager Vladimir Ivic. 

 

However, they should be able to hand Glenn Murray a competitive debut here, and will be hoping that the veteran striker can re-find his best form at the age of 36. Last time he was in the Championship, the 2016-17 season, he scored 23 goals to fire the Seagulls to promotion.

 

Paddy Power back Murray as the favourite to score here, anytime at 17/10 and as the first goalscorer 7/2. Fellow new recruit Stipe Perica is just behind him at 12/5 to score anytime and 5/1 to open the scoring.

 

Middlesbrough, meanwhile, will hope that old-timer Neil Warnock can get off to a good start to the season as he eyes a record ninth promotion, having guided them away from relegation when he was first appointed post-lockdown with four wins from eight games in charge. Pre-season has been a good omen, with friendly victories over Plymouth and Newcastle United followed by a 4-3 victory over Shrewsbury Town in the League Cup last week. 

 

The last time these two sides faced one another in the 2016-17 Premier League season, in which Middlesbrough went straight back down. Watford came away from the Riverside with a narrow 1-0 win, while the return fixture was a forgettable goalless draw at Vicarage Road. Each of the last five meetings between these two sides have featured fewer than three goals. 

 

We recommend backing under 1.5 goals here. Warnock has had time to drill his team defensively over the summer and always builds his teams on the foundations of a strong backline. Expect a tight, low-scoring encounter. Under 2.5 goals is priced at a generous 15/8.

 

*All prices correct at the time of writing and subject to change

 

Best Bet

 

Under 2.5 Goals - 15/8 (Betfair Sportsbook)

TV Channels

  • On Air Time
  • 08:00 11/09/2020
  • 20:45 11/09/2020
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Match Information

  • Championship
  • Round 1
  • Keith Stroud
  • 11 Sep, 19:45

Betting Tips

Markets Odds Rating Bet Here

First Goalscorer - Glen Murray

7/2 Bookmaker

Bet Here

Correct Score - Watford To Win 2-0

9.00 Bookmaker

Bet Here

 

                   

                   

                   

                   

     

                           

                           

                           

 

         

         

         

         

         

Lineups

Watford
(4-4-2)
Middlesbrough
(4-4-2)
  • 1. B. Foster

  • 15. C. Cathcart Goal

  • 27. C. Kabasele

  • 21. Kiko Femenía

    75'
  • 6. B. Wilmot Yellow Card

  • 8. T. Cleverley

  • 14. N. Chalobah

  • 12. K. Sema

    66'
  • 20. Domingos Quina

    90'
  • 10. João Pedro

  • 3. J. Ngakia

Substitutes

  • 26. D. Bachmann

  • 31. F. Sierralta

  • 32. Marc Navarro

    75'
  • 33. I. Pussetto

  • 52. Phillips Daniel

    90'
  • 24. J. Sinclair

  • 17. Murray Glenn

    66'
  • 1. M. Bettinelli

  • 4. G. Hall

  • 29. D. Spence

  • 16. J. Howson

  • 3. M. Johnson

  • 7. M. Tavernier

  • 2. A. Dijksteel

  • 17. P. McNair

  • 22. G. Saville

    78'
  • 11. A. Fletcher

  • 9. B. Assombalonga

Substitutes

  • 42. A. Pears

  • 27. M. Bola

  • 33. H. Coulson

  • 6. D. Fry

  • 12. M. Browne

  • 8. L. Wing

    78'
  • 15. N. Wood-Gordon

 

       

         

         

         

         

         

Simulation

Middlesbrough vs Watford

There is a 31.5% chance of a draw.
In simulations where the game is not a draw Watford, at 43.4%, are heavy favorites to beat Middlesbrough who have a 25.1% chance.
In simulation wins, Middlesbrough upsets Watford by averaging 6.9 shots and 2.5 shots on goal.
They average 1.7 goals in simulated victories vs just 0.3 in simulation losses.
Overall, the average simulation score is Watford 1.1 to Middlesbrough 0.8.

Watford v Middlesbrough

    Audio

    • FT Report
    • FT
    • Update
    • Update
    • Half Time
    • Update
    • Goal
    • Lineup
    • Preview
    Watford 1 - 0 Middlesbrough - Match Report

    Date published: 9/12/2020 4:10:35 PM

    Watford 1 - 0 Middlesbrough - Match Report

    Craig Cathcart nets Watford winner in Championship curtain-raiser

    Watford began life back in the Sky Bet Championship with a victory as Craig Cathcart’s early header saw off Middlesbrough to give head coach Vladimir Ivic a winning start.

    The Hornets saw a five-year stint in the Premier League end with relegation in July, but their push to earn an immediate return to the top flight got under way with a 1-0 win over Neil Warnock’s side at Vicarage Road.

    Cathcart’s powerful header was enough to seal the points as Ivic had to make do without the likes of Troy Deeney, Danny Welbeck, Will Hughes, Ismaila Sarr and Craig Dawson.

    The visitors created a few decent chances, most of which fell to captain Britt Assombalonga, who could not find a way past Ben Foster in the Watford goal.

    The only goal of the contest came with 11 minutes on the clock, as Boro were not alert to a short Watford corner and Ken Sema – back at the club following a season on loan at Udinese – swung in a cross which Cathcart headed home past debutant Marcus Bettinelli.

    Assombalonga’s first sniff of goal came at the midway point of the first half, as he fired in a strike from an acute angle which Foster did well to turn behind with his feet.

    Ivic handed a first league start to January signing Joao Pedro and the 18-year-old Brazilian forward looked at home at this level, sending a header wide as he looked to mark the occasion with a goal.

    Middlesbrough enjoyed more of the ball in a second half which did not contain too many chances for either side.

    Assombalonga’s turn and shot was brilliantly tipped behind by Foster, with Ivic turning to loan signing Glenn Murray in an attempt to have more of a presence at the top end of the pitch.

    Match Report

    Warnock’s men would continue to push on, Assombalonga heading a Marcus Tavernier free-kick wide when the striker should have done better.

    Despite a quiet second half for Bettinelli, Watford toasted their first Championship game since 2015 with three points ahead of the remaining opening-round games over the course of the weekend.

    Whether Ivic can maintain the momentum rests largely on which players are sold before the transfer deadline, with Deeney and Welbeck reportedly close to joining Premier League clubs.

    But in young, hungry players like Pedro and Jeremy Ngakia – making his debut at right-back following his move from West Ham – coupled with old hands such as Foster, Murray and match-winner Cathcart, he will be hopeful of a successful first campaign in English football.

    Lineups

    Middlesbrough

    ( 4-4-2 )

    • 1. M. Bettinelli

    • 4. G. Hall

    • 29. D. Spence

    • 16. J. Howson

    • 3. M. Johnson

    • 7. M. Tavernier

    • 2. A. Dijksteel

    • 17. P. McNair

    • 22. G. Saville

      78'
    • 11. A. Fletcher

    • 9. B. Assombalonga

    Substitutes

    • 42. A. Pears

    • 27. M. Bola

    • 33. H. Coulson

    • 6. D. Fry

    • 12. M. Browne

    • 8. L. Wing

      78'
    • 15. N. Wood-Gordon