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“A rather surprising candidate” – Watford eyeing promotion winner as Roy Hodgson replacement: The verdict

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This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…

Forest Green Rovers head coach Rob Edwards has emerged as one of the leading candidates to replace Roy Hodgson as manager of Watford, according to TalkSPORT’s Alex Crook.

The 39-year-old has led Forest Green Rovers to League One for the very first time in his debut season as the boss of a senior club, and his attacking style has led to serious interest in his signature.

Ex-England manager Hodgson has already confirmed his imminent departure from the Hornets at the end of the current Premier League campaign, with the club set to spend next season in the Championship.

Quiz: Can you name which club Watford signed these 20 players from when they were in the Football League?

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Sebastien Bassong

They are eyeing up Edwards, a former England youth coach and Wolves under-23’s manager, as his potential replacement – but would he be a good fit for Watford? We asked the FLW team for their thoughts…

Toby Wilding

This feels like a rather surprising candidate to have emerged for the job.

With Watford no doubt expected to battle for a swift promotion back to the Premier League again next season, this does feel like a big step-up for Edwards from a promotion battle in League Two.

As a result, there could be something of a risk involved in this appointment, although the fact that Edwards does have fresh promotion experience in the EFL behind could certainly serve him well at Vicarage Road.

Beyond that, there is the potential that Watford may have to give Edwards more time to make an impact, which may not be the worst thing for the club, if it avoids them lurching from one manager, an approach that hasn’t exactly worked for them this season, which could make that something that is now worth trying to turn away from.

Chris Gallagher

I think this is too soon for Edwards in his managerial career.

There’s no denying he has done an outstanding job at Forest Green, and he deserves huge credit for winning the league and doing so in style over the course of the campaign.

However, to make the step up to a side that will be expected to win promotion back to the Premier League is a big one – plus their drop off in form over the past few months would be a concern.

Therefore, a year in League One would be beneficial for Edwards to ensure he can keep developing and learning as a manager.

That’s not to say he would be a bad appointment, because he has a clear way of playing and is a young, hungry coach who is highly-rated, but the chance to move to a top-end Championship club will come down the line.

There’s no rush for Edwards, so he should stay put for now and Watford should look for someone who has proven themselves at a higher level.

Alfie Burns

It’s difficult to argue with the job that Edwards has done with Forest Green Rovers.

Winning promotion in the way that he has with the club and getting them into League One deserves enormous credit. In many ways, it’s great to see him being linked with a job like Watford.

For Watford, it’s a step into a completely different direction and a potential appointment that is a million miles from the decisions they’ve looked to make this season.

For what it’s worth, it’s quite refreshing to see Watford considering Edwards like they are.

It’s something that the fans surely want to see happen given how they’ve become this revolving door for the same kind of stale manager.

It’d be a strong, forward thinking appointment that you could get behind.

However, looking at Edwards, I can’t see why he’d take this job.

He’s building something with Forest Green and should look to see where that takes him. His reputation is growing and, at 39, it’s not like he needs to be making any big, potentially career-defining decisions.

A job like Watford will come around if he keeps pulling up trees in the EFL – potentially one that’s got a little bit more security.


25 years old, UCLan Sports Journalism graduate, Preston North End fan

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: “A rather surprising candidate” – Watford eyeing promotion winner as Roy Hodgson replacement: The verdict

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