Friday 30 September 2016

Garde still upbeat as Villa hit record low

Aston Villa 2 Watford 3

Published 29/11/2015 | 02:30

Watford's Allan-Romeo Nyom (left) and Aston Villa's Scott Sinclair battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match at Villa Park
Watford's Allan-Romeo Nyom (left) and Aston Villa's Scott Sinclair battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match at Villa Park
Aston Villa's Alan Hutton (left) looks dejected after the final whistle during the Barclays Premier League match at Villa Park

Aston Villa equalled an unwanted record after defeat to Watford, but Remi Garde still believes he can revive the club's fortunes. Yesterday's loss leaves Villa rooted to the bottom of the table with just five points - matching the lowest haul after 14 Premier League matches.

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Villa are five points adrift of safety and Garde, after three games as manager, is acutely aware of the task facing him but remains optimistic. Told that some will now be writing off Villa's chance, the Frenchman said: "I heard that already, and it will be over if we carry on that way. I think we deserved a point. The play was better. Everybody has to improve their levels, and we can."

It was Troy Deeney who piled on the misery for his boyhood club. Despite being a lifelong Villa fan and starting his career at the club, he enjoyed his 85th-minute header, sliding on his knees after putting his side 3-1 up.

A fourth goal in his last five games looked like giving Watford a comfortable win, but Jordan Ayew got Villa back within a goal in the 89th minute. Garde's team were unable to find an equaliser in the 10 minutes of injury-time allowed for a second-half injury to Heurelho Gomes.

Odion Ighalo gave Watford the lead, but Micah Richards levelled just before half-time, before Alan Hutton's own goal gave the visitors the advantage and set up the dramatic closing stages.

Watford boss Quique Sanchez Flores praised his strike force of Ighalo and Deeney, saying: "It's amazing the connection they had. They are able to play on the long ball or on the floor."

Gomes left the field in a neck brace and on a stretcher after colliding with team-mate Craig Cathcart. Flores said: "He had a kick to the head but felt something in his neck. We will have scans."

Sunday Indo Sport

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