Why Watford should go all out for Mateo Musacchio in January
Back in October 2018, a report from the Watford Observer had claimed that Watford were lining up a January swoop for AC Milan’s Mateo Musacchio. In the end, the Hornets didn’t lodge a bid in January 2019 to sign the AC Milan defender.
Mateo Musacchio, 28, a six-time capped Argentina international, has a strong CV having started his career at River Plate before moves to Villarreal and then Milan.
He wasn’t a regular at Milan in his debut season, clocking just 15 league appearances. However, last year saw him play regularly under the management of Gennaro Gattuso, who was sacked by the Serie A club at the end of 2018/19.
As far as Watford are concerned, they have endured a terrible start to the new Premier League season. A series of poor results has resulted in Javi Gracia’s sacking, with the Hornets re-appointing Quique Sanchez Flores as the Spaniard’s successor.
Quique Sanchez Flores now faces a tough job of turning things around quickly at Vicarage Road.
It won’t be easy but he’ll be given time to put things in the right place. And if the Spaniard does well and makes Watford play an attractive brand of football as well as help them climb the table, he’ll be definitely backed with funds in January.
One area Flores should prioritise strengthening is the defence, which has looked all over the place this season. The Hornets have conceded eight goals in four games so far in the 2019/20 campaign.
Craig Cathcart and summer recruit Craig Dawson have been Watford’s regular centre-back pairing during the opening weeks. Christian Kabasele was used in the last game in the 1-1 draw with Newcastle.
Truth to be told, all the Watford defenders have looked out of depth. Solving the defensive conundrum will arguably be Flores’ biggest challenge and he’ll have to find a way to make do with the options at his disposal. When the transfer window reopens, he must make a move for Mateo Musacchio.
Musacchio, like most modern centre-backs, is comfortable with the ball at his feet. His vision and ability to pick a pass are fantastic, witnessed during his time at Villarreal and AC Milan.
The Argentinean reads the game well which allows him to disrupt attacks quickly before it becomes grave.
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Furthermore, the 28-year-old’s defensive nuance and experience mean either Cathcart or Dawson would get a reliable defensive partner.
Watford’s defensive problems are dire at the moment and it requires a fix. By getting an experienced defender like Musacchio in the New Year, the Hornets certainly can solve their biggest area of concern.