Quique Sanchez Flores revealed he had a two-hour meeting with owner Gino Pozzo this week and although neither party are yet to officially confirm they will be parting ways at the end of the season, it was telling the head coach was looking no further than beyond the end of season when discussing how keeping the club in the Premier League has enhanced his CV.
The plan, as we exclusively revealed, remains for the break clause in the two-year contract of the head coach to be exercised in June and we understand Sanchez Flores has already been lined up for at least one job. Watford would be foolish not to be eyeing up a replacement but we gather Francesco Guidolin, the Swansea head coach who worked twice under the Pozzos at Udinese, is not in the frame.
Sanchez Flores’ replacement will have a tough act to follow after the Spaniard kept newly-promoted Watford in the top division, just like he did with Getafe in 2004-05.
“I have a strong enough CV to justify anything,” Sanchez Flores said. “I respect every team and every coach but I know what I deserve. Nothing is going to change my mentality or the club’s mentality.”
The Spaniard sees Pozzo on a daily basis as the owner is based at the training ground.
“I am in contact with the owner,” said Sanchez Flores. “I spoke for two hours with him during the week. We are at the same point as we were before the FA Cup semi-final. I am completely calm and completely focused on the three matches we have to play. I am happy. I think about finishing strongly for the fans. My future is safe because I am happy in my life. I have an amazing family and I feel loved.”
Sanchez Flores will always have a special place in the hearts of the Watford fans whose support for him was a theme of Saturday’s game. They recognise what he has achieved in ensuring they will watch their team in the Premier League for an unheralded second successive season.
“It isn’t easy to create a style and a model in ten months,” he said. “You need to make mistakes and choose the players well. If you look at Southampton, for example, they’ve worked very well over the last five years but it took them time to change things. When I came here the idea was to keep the team in the Premier League and that is done. Brilliant. We haven’t suffered and have a lot of points. It’s amazing to have three matches left in the Premier League and we’re mathematically safe. My target now is to enjoy the rest of the season. I’ve enjoyed the last ten months and I don’t want the last month to be different.”