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  • By Yann Tear at Vicarage Road

Watford boss slams 'sloppy' Hornets for lacklustre showing that is heavily punished

Watford boss Valerien Ismael believes his side paid the price for being way too clumsy and wasteful on the ball and 'beat themselves' rather than being overwhelmed by the opposition.

The Hornets' crushing 4-1 defeat to Bristol City at Vicarage Road was the consequence of an impressive display by the Robins with their high press causing the hosts to cough up possession time and time again.

But Ismael prefers to see it as the result of a below-par performance that his side can fix.

"It's a big disappointment the performance, he said. "The feeling was that we gave the game away from the first minute.

"We were too sloppy, we lost the ball without any pressure. Sometimes you need to take responsibility, to stay more calm and pass the ball maybe more to the keeper and to go on the other side. Too many mistakes and then it's difficult to have a fluid game.

"If you pick one situation, it's when we are two down, come back into the game and then you concede - sloppy. Gave the game away. We wanted more control.

"The performance was not where we expected but we have another game in three days [at home to Stoke City] so we have to make sure we recover and then we need to go again.

"This is a tough period, relentless. Anyone can beat anyone but you have to stay on a level where you can perform to give you the chance to win games and today we beat ourselves, simple as that.

"You cannot expect every time to be one goal behind and come back into the game at some point. We have to take control of the game more."

Ismael added: "We need to put the effort again, focus on our own performance to raise the level of the team. On the one hand we know we have the solutions, on the other hand we have to make sure everyone can perform on the same levels.

"We refresh and go again, but with another attitude."


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