Swansea City head into their Carabao Cup tie away at Watford in sparkling form, with the Swans having picked up a respectable point away at fellow high flying Championship side Bristol City on Saturday, a result that continues the Welsh club’s run of just one defeat in all competitions this season.
On the other hand, Watford come into the game against Swansea in awful form, with the Hertfordshire based side having yet to have picked up a victory in the Premier League this season, a run of form that was confounded even further this weekend as the Hornets were humbled 8-0 at the Etihad by Manchester City.
Newly installed manager Quique Sánchez Flores, who returned to the club for a second spell as manager just over two weeks ago, will be hoping for a more positive result this time round to kick start his team’s season, which has so far failed to get off the ground.
With the Hornets in such poor form, we decided to pick out THREE flaws that Swansea City can look to exploit tomorrow night at Vicarage Road….
Weak in aerial duels
Watford have been pretty poor all over the pitch when competing in aerial duels this season, with the Hornets severely missing the presence and leadership skills of captain Troy Deeney both up front and when defending set pieces.
Swansea should look to exploit the Hornets’ weakness in the air by delivering the ball in the air to Borja Baston at every opportunity, this will allow the Swans striker to use flick ons and short passes to create chances for supporting players, Andre Ayew, George Byers and Bersant Celina.
Weak at defending against long shots
The Hornets have also displayed a high tendency to leave space in front of their back four when defending, meaning that they are vulnerable to shots coming in on goal from long range.
This is something Swansea can look to exploit by asking the likes of Andre Ayew and Bersant Celina to cut inside onto their stronger foot and takes shots at goal, as these could not only lead to scoring in the first instance but also provide rebounds for others to score from when the Swans are on the attack.
This would perhaps require Steve Cooper’s side to move away slightly from their usual possession based style of play in favour of a more direct approach that will potentially yield more chances for shots to be taken.
Weak at defending against attacks out wide
Swansea should also look to get the ball wide at every opportunity, with Watford being vulnerable when defending against attacks from out wide, with Manchester City taking advantage of this weakness on numerous occasions this weekend.
Steve Cooper should encourage variation from his players when they are carrying out this tactic, with the Swans having both the option to cut inside from out wide and the crossing options of Jake Bidwell and Kyle Naughton, who like to get on the overlap of Celina and Ayew at every opportunity.
Space can be created for Swansea’s fullbacks by asking Ayew and Celina to take up positions further in field that will help to pull the Watford full backs out of position, thus creating space for messrs Bidwell and Naughton on the flanks.