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Watford host Sunderland this weekend at the Vicarage Road. Watford are 14th in the table with 31 points, 4 points off safety while Sunderland are the bottom most team in the Premier League table with 20 points. The Black Cats look destined for the drop and the only positive for them has been Jermain Defoe.
Watford will look to grab 3 points against the relegation strugglers and strengthen their own position away from the relegation places. They would also be determined to try and finish as high as possible with a finish in the top half of the table just 2 points away from reach.
Mauro Zarate and Roberto Pereyra have been ruled out for the season and will not be available. Other than that, Mazzarri will have some happy selection headaches.
Heurelho Gomes has been highly consistent with his performance this season and has managed to keep Watford in the game so many times.
Craig Cathcart should start this game just like how he has been starting for the Hornets in the past few weeks. Though Janmaat played against Crystal Palace, we expect Cathcart to keep his place.
The former Tottenham defender will be tasked with handling the prolific Jermain Defoe. With all his experience with Defoe previously, he will certainly know the old warhorse’s strengths and weaknesses.
Prodl featured against Palace and should keep his place considering Holebas’ form in the last few weeks.
Miguel Britos is a really important part of the Yellow Army and we expect him to start at the left-back position.
Etienne Capoue (CM)
One of three positions in the middle of the park will be occupied by Etienne Capoue. The Frenchman has been the driving force for Watford this season and is a certain starter.
Alongside Capoue will be Valon Behrami. The Swiss man has not been a consistent performer but Mazzarri would look to stick to Valon, considering his obvious quality.
Completing the midfield trio will be former Manchester United and Everton midfielder Tom Cleverley. The Englishman arrived on loan in January and has featured regularly ever since.
On the left-flank will be another January loan signing M’Baye Niang. He has been brilliant since arriving in England and Mazzarri would be foolish to drop the AC Milan loanee.
On the opposite flank, we expect Nordin Amrabat to start for the Hornets. Amrabat will look to make the best use of the opportunity that he is awarded.
The inspirational Troy Deeney will lead the attack. The club’s leading goalscorer is a key figure and it is impossible to see him out of the playing XI. He will be looking to put the own goal against Crystal Palace out of his mind when he takes the pitch against the Black Cats.