The Watford players and the head coach have been criticised by fans for failing to properly acknowledge the unwavering support of the visiting fans at Anfield
1,760 supporters, many of whom travelled on a standing-room only train from Watford Junction, were in the away end on Sunday and many were disappointed that only Nordin Amrabat, Odion Ighalo, Ben Watson and Troy Deeney come up to salute them at full-time, thanked them for their support and, in the case of Amrabat, offered an apology.
The rest either offered half-hearted applause from the halfway line or just disappeared down the tunnel. Walter Mazzarri headed straight for the dressing room as soon as the final whistle went. The fans were not impressed.
A disappointed Deeney, as he tends to do win, lose or draw, went the extra mile, handing his boots to one lucky fan in the front row.
It was a shame there was only a token appreciation of the Watford fans as they remained with the team throughout a chastening afternoon. When Daryl Janmaat pulled a goal back, they sang “we’re going to win 6-5”. When Watford won a corner in the second half, they celebrated, ironically, as if the Hornets had scored a goal. There were even sarcastic chants of “olé” and a chorus of “sexy football” when their team had a long spell of possession late on.
The players retreated swiftly down the tunnel at full-time and then into silence once they had showered and changed. None were allowed to speak to the local media or radio to shed some light to the fans on just what went so badly wrong. Instead, Daryl Janmaat spoke to rights’ holders Sky Sports while Ben Watson was given a few gentle full tosses in an interview with the club’s media department.
“The fans travelled up here in great numbers again, they were a great voice, spent a lot of money coming here and we owe them a performance,” he said before Derek Payne, in the absence of another player, chimed in, too. “They were brilliant and were even cheering when the team got a corner,” he said. “They are a credit to this club”.
The lack of gratitude from the players was noted by club administrators at Swansea last season and was rectified at home, the following week, against Newcastle. Expect all four sides of the ground to be applauded at home to Leicester.