Watford boss puts ‘important’ Deulofeu heroics down to ‘anger’

Matt Stead

Watford boss Javi Gracia believes Gerard Deulofeu used his anger at being left on the bench to inspire Watford to a sensational FA Cup semi-final comeback against Wolves.

The super sub struck a brilliant brace, including a 104th-minute winner, as the Hornets hit back from 2-0 down with 11 minutes left to win 3-2 at Wembley.

The 25-year-old turned the game with an audacious chip before Troy Deeney’s 90th-minute penalty sent it into extra-time.

Wolves were on the brink of reaching their first FA Cup final for 59 years after goals from Matt Doherty and Raul Jimenez put them 2-0 up with 62 minutes gone, but Deulofeu’s 66th-minute introduction sent the Hornets into their second FA Cup final and first since 1984, where they will face Manchester City.

Gracia said: “I think Gerard was angry when we started to play, I like to see the players this way, when they’ve felt angry, to show what they are able to do.

“He helped the team scoring two important goals. The first one was high quality, but it’s not a surprise, I see him in all the training sessions.

“We knew when we started with other players Gerard would be important, I knew it. What I didn’t know was when we started to play we were losing 2-0.

“All the players show they deserve to play and it’s not easy to choose the moments for them.”