Watford already look as though they’re nearing a third permanent manager of the season, with Xisco Munoz rapidly falling out of favour.
The Spaniard took charge of Watford towards the end of last year. He replaced Vladimir Ivic who lasted only four months at Vicarage Road, with Munoz becoming the club’s fifth permanent manager since 2019.
Where lies the problem at Watford is contested. From the outside, fans have long held the view that owner Gino Pozzo and chief executive Scott Duxbury hold the cards in more ways than they should. Questions have recently been arising about training regimes and how much influence Munoz has in them, and also of the ‘clique’ that continues to control the club from within.
Some of Watford’s longstanding players are believed to to have a foothold in managerial sackings and appointments. The obvious name is Troy Deeney – the club captain allegedly fell out with Ivic, who subsequently dropped him before losing his job only days later. His apparent ‘voice’ at the club makes the managerial position an untenable one, and combine that with the cut-throat natures of Pozzo and Duxbury it makes the current situation at Watford all the more controversial.
With Munoz coming under more and more pressure in his short reign at Watford, his potential dismissal is being talked of more and more. Speaking on Sky Sports’ EFL Podcast, Don Goodman said of Munoz:
“I’m seeing players on incredible amounts of money for that level of football – players who are worth £20, £30, £40million on paper just not giving their all and that really leaves me feeling frustrated.
“We know what Watford are. That was the kind of performance that gets managers the sack so I’m telling you that he’s probably only got two or three more games, Xisco Munoz.”
It came after Watford’s goalless draw at home to Coventry City last time out. Watford were unbearable to watch that day, with tactics making for a bleak showing in what was a winnable game against Championship strugglers Coventry City.
Goodman backs Munoz to have ‘two or three’ more games to prove his worth. Ultimately though, results won’t be the only factor in any potential dismissal.
As much as Munoz needs to win games, he needs to keep the players on board. If the likes of Deeney and co fall out of love with yet another manager then it’s likely that Munoz will be gone, and replaced with an equally obscure manager – a foreseeable cycle that’s shone a light onto how bad the situation at Vicarage Road really is.
Up next for the Hornets is the visit of Bristol City in the Championship this weekend.