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‘We want quality over quantity,’ says Deeney as Suarez talk hots up

Quique Sanchez Flores promised Watford will be looking to strengthen the central midfield area in the final week of the transfer window, hours after reported target Mario Suarez was given a leave of absence by Fiorentina to consider a potential move.

The Hornets head coach, in typically respectful fashion, refused to name Suarez as the man he is hoping to add to his squad but it is one of the worst kept transfer secrets that Watford are chasing the combative midfielder.

And the Hornets, we understand, are still confident of winning the race to land Andros Townsend for a club record fee. The arrival of Costel Pantilimon, Nordin Amrabat, Suarez and Townsend, while shipping out Alessandro Diamanti, Victor Ibarbo and Giedrius Arlauskis, would represent a seriously impressive window by Watford’s recruitment team.

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News from Italy suggests Sanchez Flores, who first coached Suarez when the player joined Atletico Madrid in 2011, could be reunited with the Spain international this week, especially after Fiorentina are rumoured to have bid for Luca Cigarini, a midfielder from Atalanta.

“Names, you know, when we know that is the player we are able to talk about the player we want,” Sanchez Flores said. “But that is not now, it is not the player of the Watford. I cannot talk about this player.

“I think yes we are expecting to incorporate some more players in the week. But, at the moment, we are supporting all the players we currently have in the squad. But, we are looking to strengthen the central midfield area.”

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Watford will not be making any panic buys this month, not just buying players for the sake of it to get them through until the end of the season.  “Here at our place, we’ve got that trust in Gino Pozzo and Scott Duxbury to make sure that if there’s any movement in the transfers, it’s a case of quality over quantity arriving here,” Deeney said in his programme notes.

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“We’ve got a great atmosphere and it’s very important that the spirit of this group is respected. The owners and the board haven’t got it wrong very often at all in the three years they’ve been here, so we’ll leave them to do their thing and we’ll concentrate on our jobs. From the little bits of business the club have done already, I think it shows it’s harder to get exactly the right type of person you want in the January transfer window.

“You’ve got to think of the longer-term future as well as the here and now. What’s this potential signing like when he’s not in the team? Is he a sulker? Are his training levels high? What are his general characteristics like? These things are becoming almost as important as a player’s technical ability. Especially with a coach like ours, who enjoys improving the players he’s working with, the off-the-field questions you’re asking of these players are crucial in my opinion.”