Next Game

Watford v Bolton

Saturday, 09 August 2014, 15:00

Sky Bet Ch'ship

Almunia issues rallying cry

Manuel Almunia has urged Watford to embrace their promotion battle and not sink under the pressure of trying to secure a place in the Premier League.

Last Updated: 08/04/13 at 16:47 Post Comment

Manuel Almunia: Feeling optimistic over promotion prospects

Manuel Almunia: Feeling optimistic over promotion prospects

The Hornets appear to facing a two-way tussle with Hull for the second automatic promotion place in the Championship behind leaders Cardiff, who hold a five-point advantage and a game in hand.

Having suffered back-to-back league defeats for the first time since October before then throwing away a lead in injury time to draw at home to Burnley, Gianfranco Zola's side have responded by winning 1-0 at Hull and taking a point from Saturday's goalless draw against Cardiff.

And goalkeeper Almunia wants Watford to thrive in the heat of the five-match run-in.

"We have shown we can face any team, we can beat any team, and we are a very solid team with quality, with strength, with many positive things," he told the club's official website.

"We cannot be scared about being at the top, it's a beautiful thing. We've been working very hard during the whole season and we deserve to be where we are. It's a good moment for the club but we have to take it naturally.

"We don't have to put unnecessary pressure on our shoulders, this is what we've been fighting for all year and we have to enjoy it, but always focusing on our work."

The former Arsenal stopper made his eagerly-anticipated return between the posts against the Bluebirds at the weekend having missed the last six games due to a hamstring injury. And he was glad to be back.

"It's been too long for me because I wanted to be back very early," the Spaniard added. "I tried to come back too early after the injury and I got another injury, and it's been so long for me.

"It's been a nightmare but time goes very quick and I'm back and I hope I can help the team until the end of the season."

Footer 365

World Cup: Penalty joy for Argentina as they beat Netherlands to reach final

Argentina overcame Netherlands on penalties after a 0-0 draw to set up a meeting with Germany in the World Cup final.

World Cup: Brazil boss Luiz Felipe Scolari to decide his future after the weekend

Luiz Felipe Scolari will wait until after the World Cup third-fourth place play-off before deciding his future.

Championship: Former Fulham skipper Brede Hangeland criticises Felix Magath

Brede Hangeland does not believe Felix Magath is the right man to lead the club back into the Premier League

Mail Box

Mails: Are Footballers Just Big Kids?

That's what the mailbox thinks, with Brazil's players showing a lack of responsibility in their 7-1 thrashing by Germany. Plus, more on Ozil and the importance of passion...

'Wow' Says The Mailbox In Unison. Wow Indeed.

There is understandably a great deal of reaction to Tuesday night's lunacy, but we have added thoughts on the anti-Ozil 'agenda' and Liverpool acting like they're big-time...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property