Picture by Franziska Empl

Vydra: ‘I want to be playing in the Premier League’

Matej Vydra will begin training next week with his sights set firmly on playing Premier League football next season.

Vydra, 24, dealt with the disappointment of missing out on a place in the Czech Republic squad for Euro 2016 by holidaying in Dubai, but he’s now fully focussed on getting in the best possible shape for the first day of pre-season with Walter Mazzarri on July 3.

“I’m starting from 15 June to train with a fitness coach to get ready to prepare in Watford,” he said in an interview with Idnes.cz. “And then he will see what happens next.”

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Picture by Franziska Empl

Vydra was told, when he returned to the training ground for treatment, that he would be given a fresh chance to stake a claim for a place in the Premier League squad next season, but the goalposts may have shifted following news of a club record bid for Saido Berahino.

“My interest is playing somewhere in the Premier League, whether it’s in Watford, or anywhere else,” he said. “I will not go into the second league (the Championship). I leave it to [my agent] Ondrej Chovanec. He is figuring out what the possibilities are. Then at the beginning of the preparation we sit down and analyse it together.”

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Vydra reported for pre-season last summer under the distinct impression he would be part of Quique Sanchez Flores’ plans but the Spaniard made his mind up after Germany that Vydra would not cut it under him. Obbi Oulare was brought in to be the reserve striker on the bench, which meant Gino Pozzo and Scott Duxbury reluctantly allowed Vydra to join Reading, so it was a real source of conflict between the hierarchy and head coach when Oulare was barely named in the squad, let alone used.

Picture by Paul Dawson
Picture by Paul Dawson

“I expected that I would be at Watford, but it did not work out,” said Vydra. “I had to accept the fact that I was out on loan. And then, as the season came out in my club and not a wish, it was definitely a disappointment.”