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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."

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may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

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ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

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s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

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