Quique Sanchez Flores is expected to remain in English football once his contract with Watford comes to an end in June.
The Hornets head coach always had one eye on the exit door when he asked for a one-year break clause to be inserted in the two-year deal he signed last summer, but it was the club who ended up using the clause to their advantage. Both parties, we understand, had to agree if the second year was going to activated.
There are some at the club who believe once Sanchez Flores knew that the writing was on the wall, or perhaps even before, he had his next club already lined up. “This is more ‘see you soon’ [than goodbye],” said Sanchez Flores. “I have the feeling that, probably, I will stay here in England or I will come back soon.”
There is a feeling at the training ground that the risk-averse team selections since the FA Cup semi-final defeat, and even before, were made with his own job prospects in mind.
“My idea is to be happy in my profession,” he said. “I try and choose well where I work. Watford was a very good choice and I have enjoyed my experience. I am completely happy. That is all I want for the future. I waited for a long time to work in England. I admire the organisation and how everything works, the press, the fans and the culture in general. It is better than in other countries. My relationship with the fans every day is amazing. It was impossible not to enjoy this experience.”
He is known to favour an extended stay in the Premier League and not a return to Spain. Sanchez Flores talked in private about the political nature of the Valencia job when Gary Neville took over and he will be reluctant to make a return to the Mestalla. Besides, his return to Getafe, last year, lasted a matter of weeks.
There are those who have argued his exaggerated charm offensive with opposition players, managers and fans is done very much with his future and appeal in mind. He could, however, just be the most charming and polite coach in the league. One player, however, has told us how the public displays of affection with the likes of Sergio Aguero, David De Gea, Diego Costa David Silva, Nacho Monreal and West Ham keeper Adrian have really grated on the dressing room, believing old pals’ act should be conducted in private.