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Our Predicted Line-Up For Watford – Three Forced Changes From Spurs

We see Steve Bruce making three forced changes from last Sunday’s win against Tottenham. We have Christian Atsu starting for the injured Allan Saint-Maximin at left-wing. The two other changes are at the full-back positions with Jetro Willems coming in for Matt Ritchie and Javier Manquillo getting the nod over Emil Krafth.

Steve Bruce has been somewhat coy during his press conferences, and we think that is the case with some of the reported doubts for tomorrow’s match. While we do believe that Jetro Willems, Emil Krafth, and Miguel Almiron are carrying knocks, they don’t appear to be serious enough for them to miss out tomorrow.

In the case of Willems, Steve Bruce has limited options on the left, so we feel that he will start tomorrow. We think Emil Krafth will also pass a late fitness test. However, Bruce may give Javier Manquillo the nod just to be safe. Krafth should be available from the bench.

The rest of the side will be unchanged, and the formation will remain the same 5-4-1 that Bruce has used in the last two matches. The only thing that gives us pause is this is somewhat predictable, and Bruce has been unpredictable so far in his team selection.

We would not be shocked if Muto started this game on the left in place of Atsu. With the marauding Willems down that flank, Muto can play on the left as an inverted winger. It may be an option that Bruce looks into to get more attacking options in the box, especially as this game is at home.

The bench will again have limited options in attack again and could look like this:

Karl Darlow, Ciaran Clark, Federico Fernandez, Emil Krafth, Jonjo Shelvey, Ki Sung-yueng, and Yoshinori Muto.

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31 comments so far

  • #BoycottAshley ( OP)

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:45 PM

    Comment #1


    Regularly enough for the majority of the blog to have your number.

  • #BoycottAshley ( OP)

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:46 PM

    Comment #2

    Listening to Cantona accepting his prize makes me wonder if he posts on here, he’s nuts enough too.

  • Jib

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #3

    Perhaps some clues as to selection

  • Bills Son Is Back

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:51 PM

    Comment #4

    Atsu needs to play imo.

    He was carrying an injury and wasn’t 100% match fit last year but showed in the last few games of last season that he is developing as a player and his performance against Spurs backed that up.

    He also tracks back well and is strong on the ball defensively which I don’t think is a strength of Muto’s.

    There is always a surprise player or two like Hayden and Longstaff last season.

    I think Atsu could just be one of our players that really comes to fore this season and it wouldn’t surprise me if Kraft was another.

  • Genjikai

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:53 PM

    Comment #5

    Funnily enough op he talks about scientists making people live forever, where has the blog heard that before…..

  • Rob1971

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:55 PM

    Comment #6

    Munster I think its about time you moved on from Benitez, no others on here have mentioned him recently yet you still can’t go a day without mentioning him. even Catchy didn’t mention him in his few posts recently

  • Rob1971

    Aug 30, 2019 at 2:57 PM

    Comment #7

    Watford have a full squad to pick from apart from Deeney, while us on the other hand have quite a few injuries, hoping for a win tomorrow but a point wont be the end of the world, I doubt Watford will be anywhere near bottom 3 end of the season

  • Genjikai

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:01 PM

    Comment #8

    Im going for a 2 – 1 win for the toon again.
    I think this injury talk is all a ploy.
    Lads firing on full cylinders, win tomorrow puts a nice 6 gap cushion early in the season on bottom place.
    Almiron and joelinton scorers.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:01 PM

    Comment #9

    Conversing with guys who are figments of their own imaginations as well, he’s losing the plot. We’ve had a full house in the last week or so, Pushy Pardew, sack Llambias, Rebecca and Jack Root, only Ian Toon and the creator of the cuckoo’s nest himself carl little c and the bus is ready to leave

  • Munster Mag

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:02 PM

    Comment #10

    Not a bad team. Lets hope we can play with a bit of flair and concerted attack which is not something that characterised our play even against average teams last year.

  • Munster Mag

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:04 PM

    Comment #11

    Agree Rob

  • Just a fan

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:19 PM

    Comment #12

    Re stay
    He seemed to lack that final pass or centre.
    If he gains that then he will be ok.

  • Bobbybee

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:23 PM

    Comment #13

    With injuries as they are the team basically picks itself.
    That tackle on Ritchie was so unnecessary. It happened right in front of where we were sitting and you heard the impact loud and clear. It was on the halfway line, he wasn’t breaking clear or anything. He was lucky there was no VAR or he might have walked.
    My mate’s an avid Spartans fan. He reckons Clark’s lost the dressing room and the fans. Needs something to happen quickly.
    Cal Roberts should shine in that league and might help save Clark’s job. Not good for the old CV is it?

  • Nostradamus " Mike Ashley The Clown "

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #14

    Honestly at home, I would 4-4-2.
    Dubs, Jams, Manny, Schar, Dumms, midfield, Sean, Issac, Atsu and Matty, with Big Joe and Miggy up front.

    Need to mix it up a little and not look to predictable, Howay the Toon, let give it to Elton nice and hard like.

  • Moonraker15

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #15

    I’m not saying Ritchie is top class; however he played regularly the last 2 seasons and we finished 10th and 13th in the prem, as you know! I would agree he’s not a top six player but that’s the problem with our club; none of the players are because of lack of proper investment.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:28 PM

    Comment #16

    What went wrong for him, was he not instrumental in Huddersfield’s rise back to the top, how did he go from league one to Northen league, did he not take the Blackpool job when it was a complete lost cause.

  • toonbrother

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:31 PM

    Comment #17

    Actually think the team will be better without Ritchie
    His Much fabled passion (i.e him gurning and overreacting to everything for the cameras) has no tangible benefit for us as a team on the pitch.

    I think he does that to conceal the fact he lacks skill or finesse on the ball

    Willems will do a better job at left back in my opinion

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #18

    Munster @10,
    You know that song from Frozen? Let it go, please do, you’re bloody obsessed man!

  • Munster Mag

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:39 PM

    Comment #19

    I’m obsessed? Not half as badly as you were Jail. Besotted might be more accurate. Rob, sorry my agreement was about something else. I will always stick with my point that I praised rafa and criticised fairly even if some people here were too obsessed with the man to read what I was saying. Anyway, I love winding up fools like Tarquin. Its hard not to. I’ll try my best, but when oddballs like Tarquin demand that the new guy win a trophy or gets to europe its comical , pathetic, and worth highlighting. Pardew anyone ?

  • Munster Mag

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:40 PM

    Comment #20

    Toonbrother, did you see him track back late in the game. Very few players do that. His energy will be a miss but thats not the worst NUFC team ever.

  • Bobbybee

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:40 PM

    Comment #21

    Jail, no idea, mate. He was once tipped for this job when his star was ascending. I think his choice of jobs hasn’t helped, often trying to rescue lost causes.
    I genuinely hope he turns this around for his and Blyth’s sake.
    Roberts is a versatile player, can play midfield or attack, anywhere along the line. He might save his job.

  • Ron Knee

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:41 PM

    Comment #22

    Fair and Balanced agreeing with a known multiple. Whatever next?

  • hibbit

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:53 PM

    Comment #23

    Ron your getting very cynical in your old age 😉

  • hibbit

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:54 PM

    Comment #24

    of course that’s only my Fair and Balanced opinion !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Billy Whitehursts V sign

    Aug 30, 2019 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #25

    I accept that a lot of our players were not fully fit at the start of the season but the current state of the squad is a real concern to me. If we return to the pre Rafa (someone had to mention him!) levels of injury this squad will be badly exposed! I hope no more get rushed in / back.

  • Billy Whitehursts V sign

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:05 PM

    Comment #26

    If they are all out we could end up with something like

    Schar Fernandez Clark
    Manquillo Hayded Shelvey Longstaff Dummett

    Hard working but toothless?

  • Ron Knee

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:08 PM

    Comment #27



  • toonbrother

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:08 PM

    Comment #28

    Muster actually ALOT of our players track back
    Atsu is bloody incredible when it comes to tracking back
    So are muto and Hayden
    You don’t notice them doing it because you are not actively looking for things to celebrate about these players
    As you do for Ritchie

  • Rob1971

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #29

    Munster why did you agree while ago that fans had to move on from Rafa if you don’t intend to, you don’t need to make a comment about him daily when there is no need to.

  • Moonraker15

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:30 PM

    Comment #30

    In view of comments about Ritchie, who do we have that’s “Premiership quality” ?

  • Bobbybee

    Aug 30, 2019 at 4:43 PM

    Comment #31

    I thought Watford might kick on again this season but they can wait until after Saturday if they intend to do so.
    I suspect our injuries are genuine, just maybe slightly exaggerated and we’ll have Joelinton and Miggy back.
    Going for a 3-1 win with Miggy finally getting the monkey off his back by scoring one and making another.


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