Quqiue Sanchez Flores says he will not even try and analyse Watford’s defeat at Norwich City because it was a game “which had no sense”.
The Hornets lost 4-2 at Carrow Road, conceding four goals to a Norwich side that had fired a blank in each of their last four matches. Time and time again Watford’s defence was cut open by a team that, before kick-off, had scored the third-fewest goals in the top flight this season.
It was an end-of-season-performance from Sanchez Flores side, a performance from a group of players – bar Troy Deeney, it must be said – who are already thinking about their summer holidays and who know the head coach isn’t going to be there next season.
“I have lived these matches before,” said Sanchez Flores whose 2004/05 Getafe side lost four of the last five after they knew they were safe. “Sometimes in the final part of the season this performance can happen. It felt like a party match. Everything was out of control. It was attack and defence, nobody controlled the transitions or the spaces. Norwich played with intensity. We played with less intensity and didn’t take care of the little details. The match was so open. We could’ve conceded more and scored more. Norwich were the same. It is the kind of match not to analyse because it has no sense.”
Sanchez Flores was at pains to stress, however, that Watford were not the only team to have switched off with matches still to play. He said Bournemouth, who were promoted with the Hornets last season and also secured safety with games to spare, have also ended the campaign poorly, losing five of the last seven.
“It is not an excuse but there are a lot of teams in the Premier League who, once they achieved their objective, have stopped playing well,” he said. “Teams lose their intensity. When we lose our intensity then we are exposed. We must reflect on that. It isn’t anything strange though. Today Norwich had their last chance to stay up. We have been safe for a long time. So the difference in the intensity was clear. That happens in football. If we at Watford are not working with a good intensity it is difficult because the level of the opposition is very high.”