Isaac Success has lost a key travel document and he may his lose his tag as the club’s record signing if the Hornets pull off a deal to sign Sofiane Boufal, but the Nigerian powerhouse says he is working hard to make sure he is in optimum condition for when Walter Mazzarri and the team return from Austria.
Success, as we reported yesterday, is not with the squad on their week-long training camp because he mislaid a visa, something that is unlikely to have gone down well with Mazzarri or the key decision makers at Vicarage Road. “I couldn’t use my Spanish residence permit to travel, I lost the permit and hope to get a new one soon,” he told allnigeriasoccer.com.
You wouldn’t blame Jack Baxter, the club’s sport scientist who has stayed behind, if he has put Success through the mill so far this week as a punishment.
“I’ve been working really hard at the training ground but it’s been very enjoyable, and I know the work I’m doing now will pay off when the season starts,” Success told the club website. “The fitness people here are great, they’re always pushing me, which is just what every player needs to be ready for a new season. “I’ve watched a lot of Premier League football before and it’s something I want to experience, so the Southampton game can’t come quick enough now.”
Success at least got key minutes under his belt in Monday’s 2-2 draw with USA side Chivas at the club’s training ground.
“I got 15 or 20 minutes in the first two friendlies [at Woking and Stevenage], which was good, and to play an hour for the under-21 team yesterday was really important for my fitness,” he said.
In a smart move, Success also had some positive words to say about Mazzarri, Watford’s new iron fist of a head coach. “I’ve worked with him [Mazzarri] a lot already during my first two weeks and he’s very good, both as a coach and a person,” said Success. “You can tell that from the work that we’ve done on the training pitch. He knows what we need to do to be successful, and he’s shown that at the clubs he’s worked with before Watford.”
Watford try and operate with foresight in their transfer dealings and like to be a window ahead of themselves. The deal for Success was announced this month but a pre-contract agreement was reached with the Nigeria Under-20 international as far back as February.
“I’ve been here for a couple of weeks now and I have to say, it’s been very easy to settle in, which is important for me in a new country,” he said. “It helps that I already knew a few of my teammates – I played with Abdoulaye Doucoure last season and Odion Ighalo is a fellow Nigerian – but everybody’s welcomed me with open arms and I already feel it’s home.”
We asked Doucoure last week about Success’ qualities. He and Etienne Capoue both laughed at how freakishly strong the forward is.
“He’s very strong and quick,” said Doucoure. “He’s a good player.”